As I have mentioned previously a couple times, I registered for a half marathon that is finally approaching this week end. Notice how I said registered and not running? Well, life happens and a half marathon is NOT happening for me this week end. As I was sort of training for it, I did get up to 10 miles with Stacy. However, I was not running enough to properly train for a half. I never got past 10 miles and I was only running once, maybe twice a week. I could get the half done but I knew I would be unhappy with a slow time. I have been debating on down grading to the 10k for some time now but was too stubborn to make the final decision. I got hit with a lovely case of bronchitis this week so the decision has been made- no more half marathon for me. I may be crazy when it comes to work outs but I am not crazy enough to run a half with bronchitis in the misty elements of Niagara Falls!
The actual event will be fun but WHY we are participating is the important part of the week end. This race will be my first charity team event. I am running with Remember Betty. Remember Betty was started by Danny Wood from New Kids On The Block. If you know me at all, you know I may love those five boys just a little bit. Danny’s mom, Betty, died from breast cancer 15 years ago last month. New Kids fans tend to be pretty loyal so when the guys reunited in 2008, Remember Betty took off running with fundraising money. The organization has raised over a MILLION dollars! There are well over a 100 teams not just nationally but internationally, too. Amazing! The team I am running with this week end has over 100 members, the largest Remember Betty team to date. We have also raised the most money for a single event. The total has not been revealed to us (it will be revealed at our team dinner the night before the race) but it is well over $50,000.
What is Remember Betty doing with the funds they raise? The organization will directly be helping families affected by breast cancer. Funds may be used to help pay medical bills but will also be used for everyday life such as buying groceries, meds or childcare. Battling breast cancer has got to be stressful enough and I am sure we all understand the financial burden only adds to the stress. Remember Betty’s goal is to help provide breast cancer patients with some financial relief, as well as moral and emotional support. The organization is not quite ready to provide grants to individuals just yet as they are waiting on the IRS to finish some paperwork.
I mentioned a while back that I was participating in a special event with Remember Betty but was not at liberty to share the details at that time. Last month I participated in the 15 Project. The original goal was to provide care baskets to 15 breast cancer patients going through chemo. We ended up being able to provide baskets to 20 patients. I hit up people I knew locally for donations for my basket. Remember Betty also had a wish list on Amazon. They sent me a box of donations provided from the wish list. I found my recipient through a mutual friend of ours. Anna invited me to visit with her during a chemo session.
Pictured below is Anna with her cousin, Kara. They are what they call “breasties.” Both ladies were diagnosed with breast cancer at age 35. Two completely different types of cancer with no family history. I sat with them and listened to them describe their personal battles with breast cancer, similar yet completely different at the same time.
These faces are why Remember Betty exists. Both Anna and Kara are quick to admit they never thought they would be diagnosed but now that they are, they have made it their mission to help others. They are very open with people they know and meet to do self examinations for breast cancer. Within just a few minutes of meeting me, Anna asked if I do self exams. Anna organized a fundraising walk that she did last week end. Cancer does not discriminate. It is everywhere. Sadly in today’s world, most of us know at least one person that has been diagnosed with breast cancer. In this year alone, I know of two ladies that have died from breast cancer. At the same time, I got to meet these two lovely, brave fighters kicking cancer’s butt! On Sunday, I will have 4 names on my back while I run. 2 of those names will be in remembrance of the ladies in a better place now but the other 2, Anna and Kara, will be on my back a tribute to those fighting breast cancer every day.
In January, it will mark two years that I lost my dad to cancer. I have seen first hand how devastating cancer is and how it affects the person diagnosed along with their loved ones. I hate cancer. I am terrified of it. I am still grieving (and will always grieve) the loss of my dad. My dad did not die of breast cancer but his death is part of the reason I am running with Remember Betty on Sunday. My dad was a very generous person. Anyone that knew him could tell you a story, or many stories, of how he helped them. By helping Remember Betty raise money, I know my dad’s legacy of helping others lives on through me. I have one more day to raise money for this event. I have reached my goal but that does not mean I no longer need donations. Any funds raised for this event will directly help families affected by breast cancer. There is even a $10 option to donate. Every little but helps! If you can spare a few dollars, please click here and donate. Thank you!