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Help me make our anniversary trip awesome!
$1,165 Raised
78% of $1.5k goal
17 contributors
0 days left
Ended Dec 16, 2014
Hello, and thanks for reading! My name is Silje, and I would like your help with making this June the best ever for my best friend, Irene, who really deserves it! :) More ...

Hello, and thanks for reading!
My name is Silje, and I would like your help with making this June the best ever for my best friend, Irene.

This year marks the 10-year anniversary for the friendship of a lifetime – in April 2004, Irene and I got to know each other after our two classes went on a joint study trip to Barcelona. From then on, we became best friends and close enough that we feel like sisters. Our friendship has lasted through everything life has thrown at it for the last 10 years, and we feel it’s only appropriate to celebrate it properly, which is why we’ve decided to do so in the city that introduced us to each other.
(Hover your mouse over the picture(s) for a description!) 

This is the first picture of us ever taken! We were just getting to know each other. I'm behind the others, Irene is wearing the green sweater.

Since 2004, our love for Barcelona has only grown. In 2010, we had the chance to go back for a week to celebrate Irene’s 24th birthday (and we'll actually celebrate my 28th this time!), and we spent the week wandering all over the city, exploring vigorously.

Irene in front of the Rambla del Mar walkway, early November 2010

In 2011, Irene started getting ill. Her health was deteriorating rapidly, and where she a year earlier had been up to walking around a big city all day long, she suddenly had trouble walking down the stairs. In 2012, she was finally diagnosed with fibromyalgia, which she had suspected for a while.

Her active life with her newfound love for the Red Cross had to be put on ice, as she was too fatigued and in too much pain to be able to help out when it was needed. This crushed her, and for a long time it was all she could do to get out of bed in the morning. Joining her friends for a movie or going shopping would exhaust her to the point of tears. Luckily, her wonderful doctor got her started on the right medications and little by little, the pain started to recede.

In 2013, she started exercising and adjusted her diet, and as a result she could reduce her medication dosages. Progress is a beautiful thing! She’s still ill, though - still in pain (and has all the other symptoms fibromyalgia causes), although some days are definitely worse than others. What helps immensely with her pain is warmth, and the climate in Spain will most likely be perfect for her, which is another reason for us to go to a warmer country than Norway for our anniversary trip. The hope is that she will be in significantly less pain for the 15 days we’re there, which in itself will be a vacation for her.

Now, you may recognise Irene from her own FundRazr campaign, «Help a chronic illness survivor get her driver’s license», and now you’re possibly thinking «Well, shouldn’t you rather use any money raised here for her license instead of a vacation?»
The answer is both yes and no. I’ve started this separate campaign (actually without Irene’s knowledge, it's a surprise!) because I want this vacation to be the best one we can possibly have. It’ll be a long, long time before we can go on a trip together again, with Irene’s savings going towards her license and me being a student without a job.

We have saved up some money for this trip, and are still saving on the side, as much as we can (though with Irene setting aside most of her money for her driver’s license, it’s not much). The apartment we’ll be staying in is already paid, as are the plane tickets, but because life is unpredictable, we’re now having trouble with money for food, transportation, etc.

A month ago, my car broke down, and I had to spend nearly all the money I’d saved up for our trip to fix it. Now it's full of water, and further work is needed to make it waterproof (not a thing I ever thought I'd say about a car). Irene’s savings are not nearly enough to support the two of us for 15 days, and as she’s unable to work, I’ve now been applying for part time jobs and summer jobs. The hope is that I can be able to save up more before we leave on June 10th – and this is where you come in.

I’m not asking for you to cover all our expenses, of course. I will do my best to save up what I need to cover basic stuff, but I need help making this the trip of a lifetime! With your help, we’ll be able to afford to visit the sights and hopefully go on a day trip to Montserrat, where we’ve never been and really would love to visit. My goal is to make this trip an unforgettable one for Irene, because she deserves it so, so much after everything life has thrown at her.

If I should be so lucky that I raise more money than I’ve asked for, all of the excess will be given to Irene’s license campaign. I will do so publicly with my own account so everyone can see where their money end up, of course! And on that note – I will be active here during my campaign’s runtime, updating, thanking you and so on, and during our stay in Barcelona I will be blogging daily for those who want to follow us. I'll give you a link to the blog before we leave. I don’t know what else to offer – maybe postcards if anyone is interested in getting one? Let me know! :)

Any donations will help us immensely, and I thank you in advance for your kindness. If you could also spread the word, that would be wonderful.

Thank you all so much!

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