My Fundraising Page

My Fundraising Page
Nov 27, 2012

Dear Family, Friends and Strangers,


Nearly one month ago I decided to do something big, something “crazy.” Jumping out of an airplane will do it for some but not for me. Instead, it’s running. Running for a really, long.. ass.. time. I have a long history with running. I like it but I always give up on it after a while. This is a shame because running and I have a great foundation together. My mother gave me those great roots.


Running was my emotional outlet when I couldn’t speak or when I was so angry, nothing I said was going to be any good. I remember my mother standing on the porch watching me run around in giant circles until she could tell I was tired. Then she walked out to greet me and that’s when we would talk about whatever was bothering me. And still to this day, I run when I feel “stuck,” emotionally. But I need more from it now.


Now, running is about hope and dedication.

Now, running is about going farther than I can imagine; literally. At this point, I cannot imagine running 26 miles in the same way I cannot imagine what Natalie who is only 2 years old and diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.


When she was diagnosed in May of 2012, her parents did everything they could do. Her father worked so they had income to pay the bills while her mother stayed in the hospital with her. Her mother, Kathy, says that in those first few days she slept on the pullout couch and got a “crash course on taking care of a child with a severe illness.”


Natalie has had several surgeries including having a chemo port placed in her chest wall so that her veins aren’t damaged by toxic drugs she’ll need in order to survive this. Take a moment to think about what that means for a minute.


This is where I’ve gotten stuck writing this letter. I don’t know what to say about that. I don’t know what words are the right words are. It’s like trying to imagine to imagine casualties of war when you haven’t seen it or homelessness when you’ve always had a home. It is difficult to wrap my mind around someone else’s struggles.


I knew that I would sponsor someone at some point whether that was through the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society or not. I happened to find Natalie’s mother on a blogging site we both use. I saw her post celebrating Natalie’s 2nd birthday. She wrote,


“ Six months into a leukemia diagnosis. Two more years of chemo to go. Such a long road. And yet I feel so very blessed to be on this journey with her. Its our journey, together. I don't know what path Natalie has to follow in her life. Will it be long or short? But I do know I am so grateful for this experience to follow her. I have learned so much. I have seen so much. Every time the needle goes into her, I can feel a twinge of pain. When she vomits, I feel the nausea in my own throat as I lean her forward and pat her gently to get it all out so she won't choke. I understand her frustration as she cries, wanting to get up and run, play, explore, but is strapped into her stroller attached to a pump pushing chemo or donated blood or platelets. It's me attending every appointment, spinal tap, bone marrow biopsy, chemo infusion, talking to the nurses and oncologist and surgeons, crushing pills into applesauce and straddling her on the floor until she swallows them and gives me the "clappy hands" signal that she has managed to get them down.


She is the Knight in Shining Armor going into battle and I am her devoted squire.”


Everyone is fighting a hard battle and we should remember that. Whether the economy is good or not, we are always struggling to overcome something. Sometimes it feels like we are always being asked for something by the world. How much more can we give? I don’t know but we should not stop giving because we do not defeat our battles alone. We overcome struggles with support from our community. No matter how much we like to think we do it on our own, we do not.


Right now, Natalie is doing great, all things considered. Let’s help her continue doing great. This has been very difficult to write but hopefully I’ll get better at that as Natalie’s reality sinks in and my dedication continues.


Please make a donation. Don’t think about it; Just do it. No matter, how big or small, it ALL matters. All of it.


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Supporter Comments

  •  
    "In memory of my grandfather. :)"
     

    Principassa Pollyana

    Wed Feb 13 12:09:21 EST 2013

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My Thanks To

Micorsoft Match - Klinck $100.00
Heidi Klinck $100.00
Principassa Pollyana $25.00