I’m just going to go ahead and say it: we’re in the home stretch. Just two weeks from tomorrow, I will be standing at the starting line for Grandma’s Marathon. WHAT??
I have no idea how the time has flown so fast, but as we zero in on the big day, I have three exciting things I want to share with you.
#1: My sister is incredible.
For those of you who know her, the above statement likely won’t surprise you. So, what makes her particularly incredible today? Well, I’m so happy to announce that Abbe is the first person to finish her Marathon of Joy! [As a reminder, the Marathon of Joy is an invitation to give to 26 others – by sending a card, letter, postcard, phone call, skype date, email, etc., one for every mile of the marathon. Click the link for more information.]
Not only did she reach out to 26 lovely people in her life, she also created an opportunity to share a bit about the fight against C. diff. She crafted the note below and included it in each of her letters. Pretty amazing, huh? She invited me to share this card with others, in case you’d like to adapt her idea to share more about C. diff with your special people, too.
I am inspired by Abbe to keep working on my own Marathon of Joy, and I hope you’ll consider doing the same!
#2: YOU are incredible.
Over the last month and a half, well over a dozen families, friends, and loved ones have made a difference in the fight against C. diff by donating to the Microbiota Therapeutics Program (MTP) at the University of Minnesota. Because of your generous donations, we are over 33% of the way to the fundraising goal of $10,000. If that’s not amazing, I don’t know what is. Thank you so much to everyone who has made this possible!
If you haven’t done so already, I want to invite you to make a donation that is meaningful to you – no amount is too small. Every donation makes a difference in the fight against C. diff, supporting outreach and education to recruit microbiota donors, as well as training for young research scientists and physicians interested in microbiota-host interactions.
We’re well on our way to hitting the $10,000 goal, but we can’t get there without you. If you’d like to support the fight against C. diff, please click here to be directed to the funding page. Thank you so, so much!
#3: The Colfax Half Marathon was incredible.
If you read the last post, you know that I decided (last minute) to run the Colfax Half Marathon as a training run for Grandma’s Marathon. Honestly, it was one of the best experiences in my life to date, and I’d love to share a couple of highlights!
- The miles went by fast. The first 1-3 miles of any run is always my toughest time, and when I feel like quitting the most. At the race though, I was enjoying the experience so much that I couldn’t believe it when I saw the first mile marker on the ground. Naturally, I had to stomp on that mile number (and all subsequent miles) to make sure it really counted.
- Running won out over walking (this time). I surprised myself by running the whole race. I don’t anticipate doing this for Grandma’s Marathon, but it was really empowering to feel like I could run this distance straight through.
- People are awesome. There were so many supporters and volunteers who came out to cheer on loved ones and strangers, and that made such a difference. Some even brought signs – my particular favorite was near the end of the race and it read: “Trump is still running, so can you.” Regardless of political persuasion, this sign made me laugh hard enough to power through to the next mile.
- Smiling was inevitable. Honestly, my face hurt almost as much as my legs at the end because I couldn’t wipe a smile off my face. I think running (and many other things in life) should just be joyful (otherwise, why do it?), and it sure felt that way on the race day. Here’s a photo snapped by the race folks!
I could share many more things about this day, but there’s just one more highlight I will share for now – it’s also my favorite.
When I was making my music playlist (at 4:30 am the morning of the race…), I added roughly 6 hours worth of music – about twice as long as I thought it would take me to run the race. On a whim, I added Nana’s favorite song, “Moon River,” to the list. It’s certainly not a “running” song, but I couldn’t not include it. With so many songs shuffling on the playlist, I figured it was pretty unlikely that it would come up.
As I neared mile 5, my music got really quiet and I thought it had turned off. As I was just about to reach for my iPod, I heard the soft beginning notes of – you guessed it – Moon River. I couldn’t believe my ears.
During the song – I kid you not – the sun came out from behind the clouds for the first time all morning (it had been a very chilly, cloudy day). Then, shortly after the song ended, the clouds covered the sun once again.
It was unreal. I know that she was right there, cheering me on like always, just with a different view this time. I don’t have the vocabulary to express what this meant to me, but suffice it to say it was a moment I will never forget.
And with that, it’s time to power through these last two weeks. You ready?!
PS – it was an amazing experience to race alongside Matthew and Andrew. That’s a whole other post, but I wouldn’t have done it without them (and Janet too, of course!). Here are a couple other photos!