After a three-year hiatus, we are excited to resume our family tradition, as Nate would refer to it, of participating in the Jimmy Fund Walk to raise money for the Dana Farber Cancer Institute on October 2nd. We have been surprised at how often our kids have brought up the Walk over the past few years, asking when it would be taking place again, planning how far we would walk whenever it finally does, and reminiscing about past years.
The fact that the Goldrings are back to hitting you up for money is as good enough a sign as any that the pandemic might have come to an end, whatever that means. At the start of the pandemic, perched on the very secluded mountain-top “home away from home” we had discreetly rented in Maine, having snuck over the border through the back roads of New Hampshire, we would usually sit outside late at night under the cell tower Dani had erected (yes, seriously) after the house had finally quieted down. Often, we would wonder at the horrific consequences that the pandemic, and the measures introduced as a result, must be having on cancer patients, and how grateful we were that each of us were healthy and well, despite the mania that we, and every family across the world, was dealing with to varying degrees. Thankfully, when our own chickens came home to roost, while extremely challenging, we did not have to deal with the same level of isolation and fear, nor delayed treatment, that so many patients suffered during those early months.
As the Jewish New Year is around the corner, and we look back at this past year, and forward towards the next, with the Jimmy Fund Walk landing smack in the middle of the Days of Repentance that lay between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, we can’t help but reflect on the challenges and tremendous blessings, that our family has undergone over the past three years. We are as excited as ever to take part in this special and meaningful day, with Tova tackling the full marathon distance for the first time, and a couple of the kids challenging themselves with a 15k trek.
Since the first year we participated in the Walk in 2011, our family has raised over $268,000 for brain cancer research. This level of impact is humbling, and also makes us feel tremendous personal responsibility in resuming our efforts. Federal funding for cancer research has tightened, and the funds we raise make a very significant difference, in real time, to the neuro-oncology research and clinical trials at Dana Farber, resulting in a tremendous impact on the lives of countless brain cancer patients, including Dani. We cannot adequately express how much each individual donation means to us, and how grateful we are for your support for our family, and for furthering groundbreaking developments at Dana Farber.
As we approach Rosh Hashana, the Jimmy Fund Walk, our annual Seudah Hodaah (our meal of thanks, another “family tradition” that will resume its pre-COVID proportions at the end of the fall Jewish Holiday season and marks the anniversary of Dani’s surgery back in 2006) and various cancer-versaries, an uncanny number of which take place this time of year, the feeling that looms largest is overwhelming gratitude. Gratitude foremost to God, for his countless and unceasing blessings, both big and small; to our unbelievable family, friends and community, for your unparalleled and unyielding love and support; and to Dana Farber, for its irreplaceable role in saving each of our lives and keeping our family whole.
Wishing you and yours a year filled with good health, tremendous joy, peace, and prosperity. Thank you so much for your support.
Tova and Dani