The current Team In Training season has been in progress now for seven weeks, not including recruitment meet-up’s, coaches meetings and other events that help us gear up for the new season.
This year is a little different in that all of our different groups are lopped in together- some are doing the half-marathon for Country Music, others are doing the full-marathon for Country Music—another group is doing the Flying Pig in Cincinnati and another bunch the Rock n’ Roll San Diego—it makes me a bit discombobulated just saying it.
The deal is though, that all of these fine, giving souls are raising money for the cause that I am strongly attached to—the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, where 74-100% of all money raised goes directly to research, to find a cure for blood cancers. As a lymphoma survivor I am extra appreciative.
There are a lot of new people wearing TNT Purple this year—that is beyond awesome (and how over-used is that word ‘awesome anyways!). At any rate I think most of these new people haven’t a clue that I’m a ‘survivor.’ In fact, for a lot of them, I think I’m just this guy who shows up on Saturday morning and tries to get everyone’s attention, while they fidget and try to keep warm, wishing that we coaches would shut the hell up, so they can get the run over with because it’s 7am and freezing cold!
This past Saturday, to be honest I was hurting—I felt weak and tired and being out there was probably the last place that I wanted to be. If this part of my message sounds ‘self-serving,’ that’s because it is.
For cancer survivors, it never ends—no matter how many years that you are outside of actually having cancer—there is always something that you’re dealing with—and I am sure that fellow survivors can relate here—while you don’t want to talk about it anymore, you want people to just understand, that you didn’t have a cold and you’re now over it—it’s a lifetime of complications, doctor and hospital visits, pokes, prodding, never ending prescriptions and side effects—and it can be really fatiguing.
For me– I had stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma—it wasn’t a bad bout with the flu or strep throat- it was cancer!
If you have a cancer survivor in your sphere, try to keep that in mind—if they say that they’re tired, they’re probably exhausted. If they admit that they’re not feeling well—they most likely feel a lot worse then they’re putting out there.
So this cancer survivor, me, runs. That’s because I ran a marathon 3 months before I was diagnosed with lymphoma, and while sometimes I truly struggle with God’s plan for what I’m to do…this part I know—I am supposed to keep running, keep recruiting others to run, and keep raising money—until I can’t anymore.
At this point, getting people’s attention to donate seems as difficult as getting the group’s attention on Saturday mornings. They would just like you to stop talking so they can get on with their own deal.
And so that’s why, when so many others have been posting fundraisers on Facebook, Twitter, email blasts, direct mail and I’m proud of all of them—I have been pretty silent.
I tell my team to ask people til your blue in the face and if the people don’t like it… well that’s their problem—yet when it comes to me—I’m just a bit paralyzed so far this season.
But that needs to end. Now.
So, here we go—if I can’t raise one more dollar so be it, but this is my cause—what I’m supposed to be doing—so if I stop now it’s kind of like giving up in the middle of chemo treatments.
And that ain’t happening.
For all of the cancer patients, who are fighting for their lives as we speak-this is for them. And for me. Because I was one of them.
Even if it’s just $1 or $5 I would really appreciate you giving to LLS—there are a lot of causes out there—great causes- but this is mine and I’m asking.
Will you help!
Just visit www.runningtocurecancer.org and give what you can- please.
And though maybe I almost did a few times in the past several months…No Retreat, No Surrender.’