I am participating in the 2019 Boston Marathon® Jimmy Fund Walk , taking steps toward the ultimate finish line: a world without cancer!
As some of you already know, our team was formed as a tribute to our Auntie Carole. Carole Ann Dwyer spent many years as a visiting nurse, as a health care worker, as a Boston sports fan, and a Jimmy Fund supporter. She was also a friend, and teacher. She was an amazing unselfish, loving, kind human being. Sadly, her liver cancer was diagnosed in late stages and she passed in 2014. My sister and I decided to form this team to raise money for a charity she loved. Her belief that science, research and medicine work best when paired up with compassionate treatment, align directly with the core values of the Jimmy Fund, who disperse their funds equally between research and patient care.
Each year, it seems that our team members walk with a specific person in the forefront of their minds. Whether it's a friend who has recently been diagnosed, a loved one who has passed, or an inspiring survivor, there are always conversations on our walks about these heroes, and their memories live on.
This year, cancer has punched a square in the gut once again. Our Dad has been recently diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Of course, our initial reaction was that of shock, fear, grief, and anger, but over the past month those emotions have been tempered with love, acceptance, and hope. We will not allow cancer to steal the joy that each day brings. We will not allow cancer to silence our laughter, or extinguish our love. We will not allow cancer to paralyze us with fear. Our hearts are full of gratitude for the research and treatment that is available, and we wake each day with renewed energy knowing that science and research are succeeding in unlocking the mysteries of this hideous disease. Our Dad has begun a battle for his life, and we will be soldiers by his side, but at this point, we can not anticipate what is to come, so we celebrate each sunrise, each day we say hello, each smile, right down to the moment.
In my years walking for the Jimmy Fund, I have learned a great deal about hope. I have learned that there is so much out there that we have no control over. Just imagine, me, the control freak, letting go. I also know that there are things that are not beyond our control. We all embody the ability to give unselfishly in whatever capacity is needed at any given time. There is always a need for fundraising for this this charity, so it feels healing and helpful to do my best.
When you make a gift to my walk, you’re directly supporting Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s unique 50-50 balance between cutting-edge science and highly compassionate cancer care. Your support allows Dana-Farber leaders to enhance programs and initiatives that serve pediatric and adult patients and their families.
Thank you for supporting my participation in the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk. Together, we can conquer cancer!