Wow. Today’s Monday, and the marathon is this Sunday, June 3. I’ll be flying out Friday evening to San Diego. Here’s the website for the marathon, if you’re interested — San Diego Rock N Roll Marathon
I’ll be bringing the camera, and my laptop. I’ll be blogging over the weekend, including after the event. Check back to this blog Sunday and Monday.
As I get closer, the butterflies commence. I have run several miles several times since the Monterey run, and I’ve felt ready…. I can tell I am processing the run/walk in the way that I’ll be able to do it for several hours. I get into that “zone” and stay there. Still, I know what it was like to have some problens on mile 19 in Monterey, and know it will happen again. While ready for it, I can’t help thinking about it.
So a few things keep me going, and let me know I’ll make it.
The first is all of you — the many diverse family, friends, co-workers and others who have honored me by donating for me. I am proud to say that, with the last few donations, and when the matching funds from work is counted, I will have surpassed $6,000 in donations. Thank you to all — you’ve made this all worth it.
Another thing that will keep me going is remembering the honored patients, friends and family I’ve introduced you to will be there (go to the link at their names below their pictures to go to that blog entry) —
and others who have been mentioned privately to me — I’ll remember them all.
Another that will stick with me is remembering an origami crane.
One person from AIG in the SF office, Mary Hancock, who made a donation also gave me a little goodie bag for the marathon. In it were some sunscreen packets (nifty!) an AIG cap, and an origami crane. The origami crane was also in purple, one of TNT’s colors. (Mary whas been a past participant, having walked the San Diego Rock N Roll marathon a few years ago for TNT.)
We got to talking about the origami crane, and we started talking about he history of it. While origami cranes have been around for centuries, it has a history in the 20th century involving leukemia.
In 1956 a young Japanese girl in 1956 named Sadako Sasaki was running a race and collapsed. Turns out, she had leukemia. As a toddler, she had been in Hiroshima and had been exposed to radiation.
According to a Japanese legend, the crane lives for a thousand years, and a sick person who folds 1,000 origami cranes will become well again. So, in an attempt to find a cure for her leukemia Sadako started on a quest to fold 1,000 of the cranes. While she passed away before getting to 1,000, she is remembered as a symbol of peace, along with the crane itself.
The ironies in this story really struck me. Here’s a young girl who discovered she had leukemia while running, while we run to find a cure for leukemia. Also, she attempted to find a cure for herself through legend, while we attempt to find a cure through funding scientific research.
Here’s hoping that the money we raise for research can help to keep other young girls like Sadako to be able to run later in life and survive leukemia.
I’ll be taking the crane with me on the run.
I introduced Doug a while back, but had great news about him today. Two things —
1) He leaves tomorrow for Rome. Lucky him… He’s attending the Rome Marathon as a honoree/cheerleader/supporter for the TNT marathon training team he has been working with. And, spending a couple of weeks there.
2) Much, much more importantly, he had his most recent testing and found out he’s still disease free.
Doug has a chronic form of lymphoma. Living with a chronic disease in remission is tough, so to have another report that everything is free and clear…. that’s so terrific.
Here’s a link to his bio, for more info. It’s a great story.
And Doug deserves it. He is a tireless volunteer/honoree for TNT. Since he has retired, his whole life is attending TNT events, and being an incredible inspiration for those who don’t have a connection. He’s doing something for TNT almost every day, every weekend, every training session for several TNT teams at a time. So many people have been inspired to excel and achieve because of him.
Enjoy Rome, Doug! Looking forward to pictures.
Now I’m going to honor some of the people who inspire me, and for whom I will be running. There are lots of people who inspire me, but I have to start with Doug. Doug was perhaps the first other patient struggling with leukemia that I got to know. He has a chronic form of lymphoma.
I’ve gotten to know Doug well over the last few years, having been a fellow Honoree for some of the Team in Training programs over the last few years.
We took a great trip to Washington DC last fall. We agreed to take this trip while he was recuperating from a recurrence of his lymphoma. Last spring his lymphoma came back. It’s again in remission, but it’s very possible it may come back.
Doug is the personification of the need for continued research into new treatments and cures. There are thousands of people all across the country in his same situation – people for whom their quality of lives are diminished (or shortened) by recurring diseases. And although I haven’t gotten to know many of the others, I do know Doug. He is a tremendous person, with great spirit, energy, and a renewed appreciation of life. He spends almost all the time he has volunteering to cheer on TNT teams all over the Bay Area.
I’m honored to know Doug, and to be running in his honor.