My Fundraising Page
Oct 26, 2009 by Elizabeth Aronson
Racing to Save Lives
Welcome to my Team In Training home page (and no, that isn't me in picture, but maybe I will look like that by April...)! THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO HAS SUPPORTED ME SO ENTHUSIASTICALLY! If you are coming here to donate today, please click through to my friend Rosie's page and make your donation there (if you want, make the donation in memory of my dad, George Parks!)--her race is in just a couple weeks and supporting her will be a great way to support me!
It has been just over 4 years since I lost my dad to a rare lymphoma. As Katie, our almost 2 year-old daughter grows and discovers the world, it breaks my heart that she cannot know her marvelous grandfather and that he will never get to know this amazing child. I am saddened that my mom has to spend her retirment years alone, rather than exploring the world and sharing precious summer days at her cabin with her best friend. Dad was truly the love of her life, and she misses him every day. Leukemia has robbed me of childhood and college friends and my marvelous boss at NIH, Dr. Ernst Freese. Every 10 minutes someone dies from a blood cancer, despite the amazing advances in treatment that have been developed since I lost my first friend to leukemia in 1976. PLEASE HELP--your donation to my Team in Training fundraising will bring much needed funding to blood cancer research both locally and nationally. It will also provide funds for patient services to help families with what is often a long, difficult, and painful fight.
I'm training to participate in the Country Music Marathon in Nashville in April. It will be my first marathon since the baby and the first one I hope to run instead of walk. As I train with others on Team In Training, we will focus on the much harder endurance event that paitients with leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma participate in every day. Every mile we complete in training and in the race itself is run or walked to honor them and to make their struggle easier. These people are the real heroes on our team, and we need your support to cross the ultimate finish line - a cure!
I know that the economy has all of us struggling a bit financially this year, but cancer doesn't slow down for a financial crisis. Please make a generous donation to support my participation in Team In Training and help advance LLS's mission. You can also advertise your support for Team in Training with a variety of TNT themed items from my online shop. All profits on these items also goes to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Please feel free to pass this along to others who may be able to help.
As promised in my email, I have a blog where we can post memories of those we've lost to blood cancers (starting with people I know, but we can add others) . Here's the site: http://gonebutnotforgottenlls.blogspot.com
I hope you will visit my web site often. Be sure to check back frequently to see my progress. Thanks for your support!
First a HUGE thank you to all of you who have taken me beyond my fundraising minimum, beyond my fundraising goal, and within a few dollars of ROCK STAR STATUS (that's where we are when we raise $1000 above the minimum for our event)! You have done SO much to help patients and their families!!!! Be proud of yourselves, I just do the running--you are saving the lives!!!!
I'm continuing to collect a list of names for my miles in the race. If you have a friend or relative with blood cancer, please let me know and I'll dedicate a mile to him or her!
So Sunday was our last long training run. Next week we run in an actual 5 mile race to raise money for the upkeep of Valley Forge National Historic Park. Midweek runs are a nice sane 6 miles. The Paris team ran their race and finished before our long training run (22 miles or 4 hours whichever came first), and I loved coming home and checking all their times. GO TEAM! They were great fun to train with. Sunday was my Dad's birthday, so I did the "mission moment" to motivate people for the run. I actually spoke to both the spring and summer season teams, so there were a lot of people to honor his memory. Below is what I said. Meanwhile, I'm working on getting my mind around the fact that the marathon is in less than 2 weeks!!!! Time to start putting names of my mile honorees on ribbons and getting set to go!!!!
Today would be my Dad's 75th birthday. I hope you will all run in his memory for me today. He never got to visit me here in Philly, after I moved here to marry my college sweetheart 20 years after we met. In fact, while he got to taste wedding cake samples from a rehab hospital bed, he didn't live to see our wedding or to get to meet my daughter or his only grandson. That's tragic, because he was an amazing Dad, full of life and music and laughter. Today is a great day to run in his honor, because he would have loved this place. Dad was crazy about nature, feeding wild birds by hand, teaching me to climb trees in the woods behind our house, going on long walks in forests and photographing all kinds of animals and plants. When he was 60, he was diagnosed with Waldenstrom's Macroglobulenemia, a rare lymphoma. It forced him to retire early, and robbed my parents of the type of retirement they had always assumed they'd have. His type of cancer randomly affects all sorts of organs because it causes overproduction of proteins that thicken the blood and disrupt blood flow. One of the earliest impacts on my dad was kidney damage and edema that made it very painful for him to walk and stand for the last 10 years of his life. It did lots of damage to his feet and toes. When your feet hurt toward the end of your long run today, imagine that feeling all day everyday for 10 years. Then know that the money we raise may spare other patients those 10 years of pain. Take in the scenery, notice the birds and the flowers, breathe in the air. Enjoy it for Dad. He'd love to spend his birthday out here with us.