Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I am humbled: Run for our Sons & the Goofy Challenge

Aidan and his service dog Song
The picture to the right prompted this posting.  It's of my cousin, Aidan, and his service dog, Song, standing in a stream. His mother posted this and the below thoughts tonight, and it just breaks my heart.  "It's been 1 year since Aidan took his last steps."  I am humbled.

A few weeks back, I asked the question to a bunch of my running friends, "why running?", and the answers were fascinating!  From tapping into a primal instinct, setting your mind free, enjoying this simple, basic (yet for those that know it best, wildly complex), rewarding activity, to feeling an overwhelming sense of accomplishment at achieving something you didn't think possible, the answers ran the gamut.

Now, I'm reminded, once again, that there are kids out there that can't even take a single step on their own.  This, more than anything else, keeps me pushing to bigger running goals. I feel grateful, appreciative, and fortunate to have the opportunity to do what I do, and I am humbled by the spirit of those brave few that can't yet maintain the courage to push on.

Aidan's mother, Maria, wrote:
"It's been 1 year since Aidan took his last steps. I am grateful for the freedom, independence, and speed that his wheelchair gives him. I am relieved that he no longer falls every day. But a big part of my heart broke last year. I miss seeing my son on his feet, and I would give just about anything to see him walk across the room to me again."
I'm running the Goofy Challenge again in January (my 3rd straight year with the half-marathon on Saturday and full-marathon on Sunday) to support my family in their efforts to end Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a debilitating disease with no cure afflicting 1 in every 3,600 newborn males.  Last year I finished in the top 5% of Goofy Finishers (adding the half and full times), beating my cousin Jim by a combined 11 seconds!  I plan on crushing that time this year (top 4% maybe???).

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Many thanks for your support. It's appreciated more than you know.

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