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Progress, Not Perfection

Pam Kaufman from Huron Valley PACE

“Let your house be messy, and go play laser tag with your kids,” said Pam Kaufmann, mother of two boys. “Make sure you take the time to have fun with them; they grow up so fast—too fast.”

Pam is an active and vivacious person whose energy and enthusiasm for life is contagious. As the mother of two boys, it’s no surprise.

“They’ve kept me active and young. You get involved, and it’s messy, but it’s okay,” Pam said. To her, getting involved means even letting her son’s scream-o rock band practice in the basement for three years.

Born and raised in the mountains of Colorado, Pam is an outdoor person. Whether she’s hiking, skiing, running, or playing racquetball, she loves staying active.

While in college, Pam met her husband, Dale, through a Christian dating service. They fell in love, got married, and spent their first three years of marriage in Colorado. As a youth pastor, Dale was called to work in Oregon for a couple years, and then he was called to Michigan.

Pam also found a calling in Michigan as the Enrollment Assistant and Outreach Specialist at Huron Valley PACE. During the day, she helps participants feel welcomed and loved at the center, and educates the community about Huron Valley PACE.

Their sons are now grown, but that doesn’t stop Pam and Dale from having fun and staying active. She and her husband often play laser tag and other games with middle school and high school students.

“They’re crazy and full of energy but it’s so fun to just hang out with them and get to know them,” Pam said.

Unfortunately, while keeping this active lifestyle, Pam pulled her knee apart. Over the last 20 years, she’s had four surgeries on her knee. Next week, she’s having a knee replacement, which doctors believe will keep her from needing any more surgeries. Pam knows the recovery will be hard, so she’s been preparing herself for months—walking daily to stay healthy, fit, and strong.

“The stronger I am before surgery, the easier it will be for my body to come back after the knee replacement,” Pam said.

She even joined a support group of females on Facebook, called Fellow Flowers. It’s a running/active support group that encourages women to take time for themselves, relieve stress, and support each other.

“In a world full of negativity, it’s nice to have a group of people who are intentionally positive,” Pam said. “We focus on progress, not perfection.”

Her surgery is next week, and although this is a big operation, she feels confident that she’ll be active in no time. She even has plans to go to Colorado in June.

“We make a trip out to Colorado as often as possible to see our families,” Pam said. “We also go to Top of the World, a lookout point in Colorado that my husband and I love to visit. We’ve been there in good times and bad times. It’s beautiful. You see mountains and valleys, trees, and rivers.”

Top of the World is famous trail that is part of Pike National Forest, which, sadly suffered a forest fire 20 years ago. But, it is gradually coming back with new growth.

Like Top of the World, Pam will bounce back from her knee replacement—with even more energy. She’s excited to get back to Huron Valley PACE to see her family of coworkers and participants. She’ll be back to running, hiking, and playing laser tag in no time!