This morning I went out for one of my last runs before Marathon Sunday. I was proudly sporting my bright orange Fred’s Team T-Shirt as I ran by all of the “Marathon Route” banners that are now flying in Central Park. I finished my morning run at the official NYC Marathon Finish Line by Tavern on the Green. As I turned into the park from Central Park South, I could see the FINISH in the distance and I realized that as I looked for the official NYC Marathon Finish Line I was envisioning the official SCARLETT END OF TREATMENT FINISH LINE. It’s hard to believe that Marathon Sunday is around the corner and so is Scarlett’s last day of chemotherapy. It’s been a long hard road but it is a great feeling to know that soon after I finish the 26th mile of the marathon, Scarlett will be wrapping up her 26th months of treatment. FINISH LINE. It has a whole new meaning to me this year.
I run for so many reasons. I run for Scarlett. I run for my Dad. I run for those that are finished with treatment and are back living their lives. I run for those that were not as fortunate and did not survive. I also run for me. I run to quiet the dark thoughts and to calm the fear that any mother of a child with cancer would have. With each mile that I am able to run, I am grateful that I can run. I am grateful that 2 years after Scarlett’s diagnosis, we are still a family of four. I am dedicated to MSK and to Fred’s Team because I know that the money that I raise will go directly towards pediatric cancer research which is drastically underfunded. I am inspired and excited and joyful to be raising funds and awareness for this great cause. With your help, I hope that we can save families from traveling the same journey that our family has traveled for the last two years. I run to find less toxic and less lengthy treatments. Ultimately, I run for the cure.
Mile 1 is for my sweet 8 year old daughter, Scarlett, whose strength and courage will help me make it to 26.2. You are my hero.
Mile 2 is for my father who will begin treatment for a very treatable form of prostate cancer on the day that Scarlett wraps up treatment.
Mile 3 is for Scott Southwood who is living proof that research dollars are making a difference
Mile 4 is for Hunter in honor of his upcoming 4th birthday. He is battling leukemia and hopes to wrap up treatment before he turns 5!
Mile 5 is in memory of my teammate, Tracey Frost Rensky’s father, John Warren, who passed a few weeks ago. We know he will be with us in spirit throughout the 26.2!
Mile 6 is for Johnny who I met in the procedure room. Your strength and spirit are strong and reminds us all that we should never give up.
Mile 7 is for Nelson Negron’s siblings, Daisy and Rick who are both battling cancer – and winning!
Mile 8 is for cancer survivor Andrew McMahon whose song “Sometimes you just got to swim” got me through more than one tough moment.
Mile 9 is in memory Robin Schissel who lost her battle with cancer but will always be remembered.
Mile 10 is for Judith Boulais who has just begun her fight. We are all behind you!
Mile 11 is in memory of Wade Huggins who served as an example of how to get up, square your shoulders and face each morning with a poise that elevates all around you.
Mile 12 is for Rita Malhotra who has been battling cancer for 9 years with perseverance and strength. Her bravery and determination to fight every day will inspire me to reach the 1/2 way point!
Mile 13 is in memory of Helen Sparrow-Hodkins who beat lymphoma as a young adult but recently lost her battle with ovarian cancer. We will never pass a vintage Mustang without thinking of her.
Mile 14 is for Ursula’s Dad who is battling the same cancer as Scarlett with strength and courage.
Mile 15 is in memory of Sacha who passed a month ago. His humor and kind nature was admired by all.
Mile 16 is in memory of Beau Biden. 16 was a number in his Army Unit. We should all try to live a bit more like Beau did – with extraordinary kindness, integrity, courage and strength.
Mile 17 is for Thomas Hanson who battled cancer this fall and won!
Mile 18 is for Gina who I promised to take a moment at mile 18 as I am leaving Manhattan “to reflect on what you are accomplishing and why – and to be grateful that you are able to run it!”
Mile 19 is for Shelli’s parents who are both battling cancer with strength and grace. This mile is for you Garland and Nina!
Mile 20 is for 4 year old Alex Philipp in honor of her birthday. Alex loves to say that she is “a rockstar superhero princess” and would like to remind me that when I hit the wall at mile 20 that I am also a rockstar superhero princess!
Mile 21 is in memory of Ayman’s Mother, Salway, who was a philanthropist, educator, mother of 3 and grandmother of 5. Your kindness, generosity and love for your family will always be remembered.
Mile 22 is for 11 year old Torrence who has battled cancer for 10 years and whose smile and and kind disposition are treasured every day.
Mile 23 is for Kimberly’s Mom who was recently diagnosed with lymphoma. Surrounded by her children and grandchildren, she knows she is not alone in this fight.
Mile 24 is for Gina’s Dad who is battling cancer. He has been happy nearly every day of his life and still is which is quite an achievement!
Mile 25 is for 12 year old Grant – I know I can depend on TEAM GRANT to get me through that last mile….
Mile 26 is for sweet Luna who will give me the strength to get up that hill to the finish!
Thank you for all of your donations and support. Hope to see you on Marathon Sunday!
Bib Number: 36535