Why I run #1 – mental – what does it all mean?

January 27, 2007 at 9:39 am | Posted in honoree, Reasons why I run, TNT | Leave a comment

Another set of posts will cover why I am running and fundraising for a marathon.

The short answer is the “C” word — cure, and celebration of the 5th year of being disease free. The stories of what I went through five years ago are being documented. See the tab “About this blog” and “About APML” tabs at the header for more detail, if you haven’t already.

But it runs even deeper than that. There are people who I’ll introduce you to, fellow honorees for TNT, who face much more than I have, and I had a lot. There are others some of you may not have met, but who have been lost to blood cancers, and other types of cancers, who I run in honor of.

But the first reason I want to mention is this: I have no idea why any of this happened to me. Why do things happen to a person? Is there a reason for the things we go through? I used to wonder why I got this and what it meant. I also wondered why my prognosis was so good, why my treatment wasn’t as difficult as others have gone through, and why I survived where others didn’t.

I spent the first few years after my survival wondering these questions, and feeling like I never got the reason, the life-changing “I’m going to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro” drive that pushes other survivors to understand their diseases and enjoy life more.

But in the last year or so, as I’ve spoken to TNT participants and prospective participants at various functions telling my story, I’ve come to realize something. My story, my survival, is representative of the hope that leukemia research — the kind of research that Team in Training fundraising programs go to fund — can save lives. That research saved my life, and allowed me to be treated in ways that don’t require severe treatment regimens. I now realize that I have a great story, and a great gift in the ability to speak well, and the ability to tell my story of how TNT participation and fundraising saves lives like mine to great effect.

So I am running now, to complete the circle. I have gone from not understanding, to understanding how research into treatments saved my life, and the power of fundraising for research to save other lives. Now, I want to do my part to raise funds as well. I’ll always tell my story to help others understand how raising funds for leukemia research saves lives like mine. Now, I want to start raising funds of my own, and get the benefits you gets when you train and complete the endurance event.

And I also realize another benefit –I have moved participants and trainees in the TNT program, but as an observer, an outsider. As a fellow participant it will be even more of an impact. So this marathon is to help others be able to be cured and celebrate, while celebrating my own cure.

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