Illness is isolating. I think, in part, because of the uniqueness of its divisiveness.
It separates you from those around you in different ways. Those differences can be physical, emotional, or psychological.
As I prepared to fundraise and train for what would be my 4th and 5th run with Team lifeline, I started to wonder if maybe this would be my final season. 3 years in, it’s getting more and more difficult to fundraise. I was so happy to be back, but I was a little distracted by my own stuff going on.
Because I forgot for a minute why I’m here.
I’m here because this organization, it’s supporters, and it’s beneficiaries are my family.
This organization has this magical ability to take strangers from every background and religious denomination and turn them into your soul mates.
Because that’s what they do. They take families struggling with some of the most nightmarish things we can’t even fathom, and they surround them with love. With support. With family not given to you at birth, but chosen for you by the thread of love and empathy to help bring happiness into the lives of people that desperately need it.
Asking people for money is hard. But it’s not harder than being sick, and it’s not harder than feeling isolated from everyone around you.
And so I’ll keep coming back, year after year. To reunite with my soul family, and hear more stories and run, walk, inspire, alongside champions who are still fighting, and to hear from the family members of those that are fighting for those that aren't around to witness it anymore.
To the family, friends, and strangers that have taken the time to read this, I thank you.
The ripple effects of your generosity - financially or in your time - are innumerable.
I appreciate you.