We are celebrating Shannon as our December Member Of The Month! She has a real feel-good story that I think is a perfect way to wrap up another year of celebrating our members. 

Shannon became a member in September, after trying out our free week of classes. She had no prior kettlebell experience but she was looking for a small and welcoming class. Shannon also had a very important strength goal.

(with permission to share) You see, Shannon is a single mom to two kids. Her 15-year-old daughter has special needs; she has autism and seizures. When she has a seizure, Shannon often needs to be able to lift her daughter to safety. At 15, her daughter is pretty much the size of a full-grown adult. So Shannon’s #1 goal was to become strong enough to more easily assist her daughter when she needs it. 

Shannon is also a busy business owner. She owns the Autism Community Store which is just down the street, on the other side of Iliff. They make their own weighted blankets to sell at the store. This requires Shannon to lift 50-pound bags of millet to give to the seamstresses. Shannon realized the other day that she was naturally hinging at the hips as we do when we lift kettlebells, in order to pick up these bags of grain and that they were easier to haul around. Keep in mind, a bag of grain shifts and moves, making it more difficult to carry. 

“Kettlebell training helps me feel like I am taking care of myself.  It gives me more energy (even if I’m sometimes sore a little after :)).  I feel like I carry myself and move a little differently.  Kettlebell has helped improve my posture in a way gentle reminders to myself did not, and the body mechanics Kettlebell teaches seem intuitive, protective and strength-enhancing.  I am grateful to Shari for her kind and thoughtful instruction.”

But the most heartfelt testimonial to Shannon’s new-found strength is this. 

A few weeks ago, just about 2 months into her training, Shannon told me that her daughter had a seizure in the bathtub. Shannon was quick-thinking and drained the water right away, but she needed to get her daughter out of the tub. Shannon used her skills and was able to lift her daughter out of the bathtub without a struggle. It was a scary moment, but she was able to react to the situation and move in a way that is now natural to her.

It’s a bittersweet moment. Obviously, it’s sad to hear that Shannon and her daughter go through this in the first place. But at the same time, we want to celebrate Shannon for quickly meeting her #1 goal of being strong enough to assist her daughter when she needs it. 

Congratulations on all of your hard work Shannon! We send our best to you and your family.