Well, you may have thought I was crazy the first time, but we’ve decided to up the ante. Sometimes to my Oncology teams’ chagrin, but hey I’ve never been good at listening when people tell me I should not or cannot do something.
I signed up for the Chicago Marathon in 2020 and deferred my entry in 2021 to run the 125th Boston Marathon. Well, it just so happens I would have a lot of life in between that time. But that does not mean I’m going to let my dream of running all six Abbott World Marathon Majors fade away. The Chicago Marathon on October 9th.will be my second World Marathon Major I will run in 2022. The focus of competing has shifted a little bit for me now and into the foreseeable future. I still want to get back to competing while running, but I also want to compete to raise a ton of money for cancer causes! This truly has been a great gift of cancer to join with the wonderful people who’ve supported me to raise money for others has been life changing! If you’re in Chicago that day please come join us for some after marathon fun!
I’m in a different place physically then I was before. I had a successful surgery after the 126th Boston Marathon on May 4th and I had to take 3 months off from running recover from the surgery. At this time all my scans and bloodwork look like we got the cancer, but that does not mean I’m cancer free or out of the woods yet. I started chemo again on August 1st and we are making great progress. I can run now and so I see no reason I cannot run Chicago in a few months. It’s much easier for me to motivate myself to get out the door or to run as well as I can as I am painfully aware there are too many cancer patients in a chemo chair or hospital bed fighting for their life. Please help me help make those patients lives a little easier!
In the spring, we raised over $13,000 with our Boston fundraiser and I hope with your help we can raise some more money. We are working to make our Tell5friends.org into a foundation and to create a lifetime organization for our family to support cancer patients, support cancer research, and most importantly, encourage everyone to get their colonoscopy at 45 or if you have any symptoms as soon as those symptoms first appear.
For those of you new to my story, here is a summary about me, who we are raising money for and why. I went in for a routine colonoscopy at 46, the first one I was eligible for under new guidelines. The day was January 5th and where we live, that time of the year is often dark and cold. On that day, they discovered a 4-5 cm mass in my colon. On January 6th I would learn that I had colon cancer. In the weeks that followed I would learn through CT scans and MRI’s that my cancer had metastasized to 7 spots in my liver ranging from 1cm to 2.5cm. I was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer. I had no symptoms, and I had no idea what this whole new adventure that my life was now would look like!
Mayo clinic came back with a plan that my oncology team at the Unity Point Helen G. Nassif Cancer Center would execute. During that time, I made the decision to run the Boston Marathon and raise money for two great charities who supported our community. The run at Boston was amazing and even more amazing with the support I received.
Starting this fall, we will raise money for again for these organizations. These are unbelievable people that run and support both charities.
In the 6 months since I started my cancer journey, I have experienced unbelievable acts of kindness from friends, family, and many people in the cancer battle who started as strangers that I now call friends! When I started my chemo, I was given an “I Know Jack Foundation” backpack and I learned about Jack and the Hoeger family. If you haven't had time, please go to their website, and read Jack's story. He fights cancer with the courage we can all aspire to, and even more beautiful, the family is paying it forward. The foundation makes a backpack available to all Cedar Rapids cancer patients.
Jack attended an awesome camp run by the Children's Cancer Connection camp, Camp Heart Connection. Any child who has cancer in Iowa is eligible to have a great camp experience with the support of medical teams if needed.
If for any reason I can't run I have a list of Cancer Warriors already entered and ready to carry the torch! Please support me in my goal to always Challenge Myself No Matter the Circumstance and let's raise a ton of Money!!