On Saturday night, I celebrated a milestone day with one of my closest friends. Her name is Melissa, and in addition to celebrating her 34th birthday, it marks the beginning of her 5th year in remission from Hodgkins Lymphoma. Yes, what a great way to celebrate a birthday! In addition to being one of my closest friends, she is an amazing, bright, beautiful person who I am so thankful for as a friend. Now on Sunday morning, as part of my training, I ran a 10km run, which was a little more difficult due to excessive alcohol consumption.
Anyhow, last year when I took on the challenge of completing a triathlon, it was done with Melissa formost on my mind and my thoughts as I did it. I was one of a few people who got to see and spend time with Melissa during her Chemotherapy treatment and it was humbling to see her drive and her fight. Indeed, the fight never left her eyes and she was convinced she was going to beat this thing called Cancer, and well, she did – and then some. She returned to her career, has and continues to travel, and in general thrives.
The amazing thing is that while I will continue to participate in Team in Training because of Melissa, I’ve also had the opportunity to meet so many other people who have been touched by Cancer or by the stories of friends, family, or colleagues to try and do something about it. For example, one of my teammates this year, Tony, survived a rare form of Leukemia which was fatal 95% of the time only 10 years ago, but because of research and development of new drugs and treatments, it is now 95% curable! Last month he had his last dose of chemo, and he’s now racing in the Lavaman Triathlon in Hawaii with me! This is more than a little exciting, awe-inspiring, and amazing.
We race and train for ourselves, but we also race and train with certain people in mind. Tony is one of them, Chantal is another, and for me, Melissa is never far from my thoughts. So, this is why I do what I do, why I fundraise to seek the end of blood cancers, it is why I put myself through minor agony (knee pain), to achieve success, and why come April 1st, I’ll be putting my heart, soul, and body on the line to achieve a personal success in honour of those who might not be able to do it for themselves.
But none of it will carry the same weight without the help of my friends and supporters as I seek to fundraise for Team in Training and the fight against blood cancers. Please click HERE to help if you can – no amount is too small!
Thanks, and enough said…