Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sunday Shout Out: Week 5

Five weeks in already? That is crazy talk. And getting ready to start my fourth week of training?! What a journey this has been already. The generosity shown to me as a volunteer for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society has far exceeded my expectations. I certainly have an awesome network of friends and family. You are all incredible! Not to say I expected any less of you in that regard! You are the ones giving me strength. And little Clayton? I know that one day when he looks back and reads of your generosity in his honor...he will be just as amazed as I am right now. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Donations received this week:

As a note, in case there is confusion...Yes, I am raising money for a society specific to blood cancer. However, I will be writing on my jersey the names of all individuals in my life and in the lives of my family and friends who have battled any type of Cancer. Because anyone who has battled Cancer is going through/has gone through much worse than I will in my journey to 26.2.

Barry and Janet are our neighbors from our old cul-de-sac. They lived right next to us and have a really incredible fish pond in their back yard. It was gorgeous! They were always so sweet to the girls - so much so that the girls still ask when we can go see Barry and Janet. I'm thankful for the time we had living next to them, despite the fact I was in such a fog the entire time (3 kids in less than 4 years!) that I wasn't able to be quite as awesome of a neighbor back. I think they forgive me. Thank you so much, neighbors!

Sharylyn and I go way back. Her daughter, Lex, and I were very close in high school. Sharylyn was like a second Mom to me. Hilarious and kind. Funny and sweet. Phil was Lex's Dad and Sharylyn's husband. I can say that there are some people that I will never forget. In addition to their entire family, Phil stands out as one of the men in my life who truly touched my heart. He was an amazing man. Phil lost his life to Melanoma. Phil is the reason that I will always stay on top of my skin checks with my dermatologist. And the reason that the atypical moles I had are now gone. He was taken much to early. But he fought incredibly hard, and never once stopped caring, loving, praying, and living. His funeral was an incredible day. Incredibly awful, because losing someone so important in your life is so painful. But incredibly touching/amazing/inspiring at the same time. He was a good - no, a great - man. It is a true honor to put Phil's name on my jersey in Memory of his life. Sharylyn, thank you so very much for your donation. Your family is immensely special to me. I'm thankful for you!

Matt is a lawyer at the same firm where my husband works. His wife, Polly, has already completed a marathon through Team in Training. Go Polly! I was reading an article recently about a woman who does multiple Team in Training events (she is one of my coaches). As I continued reading I got to a part that talked about a woman who is her coworker who did a marathon as well - it was Polly! There were great quotes from Polly about her experience. That got me really excited! To have their support means so much to me. I love having someone I can go to who has been there, done that. Thank you so much!

John and Sheri are like a second set of parents to me. Their daughter, Hannah, and I were inseparable our last years of high school. The similarities between Hannah and I were freaky. Our first name, our Moms both had babies within months of each other (Hannah's mom the end of our junior year, my mom the begining of our senior year), we have blonde hair, everyone got us confused, etc. We may as well have shared families! Hannah and I would go to her house at lunch, often. Sheri made the best potato soup. Ever. I still crave it. I always admired her ability to just whip something up so effortlessly. She also gave great advice. What a great woman! Sheri is still a special part of my life, as is their entire family. Though Hannah and I lost touch for a while, getting back in touch with her (and thus, with Sheri) has been a blessing. I love you guys! Thank you!

Connie is one of Scott's partners at the law firm. She and her husband, Steve, are way fun. Connie is an incredible athlete, and doing this marathon training made me think of her because I can absolutely see her doing this. Only she would kick major butt! She is gorgeous and kind and someone that I always have enjoyed. I truly appreciate your support! Thank you both so much!

Suzanne. Ah, Suzanne. She was one of 15 or so people at my wedding. (We were married in Jamaica, mon.) First and foremost, Suzanne is a survivor! She beat cervical cancer! Her name will have a special spot on my jersey. I am so pleased to pay her this honor. Suzanne means so much to me. She and her daughters have a very special place in my life. Suzanne wasn't married to him at the time, but "Vinny" was Scott's best friend. He was killed in a car accident while I was pregnant with our second daughter. Their entire family still means so much to us. Having her support brought me to tears. Suzanne, I love you. Don't forget it.

Bill and Eleanor are my great uncle and great aunt. His brother was my Mom's Dad. I never got to meet my Grandpa, he died when my mom was just seven years old. But, I do know that if he was anything like Bill, he was a fabulous man. They have always been a source of fun and happiness in my life. They have great kids - it always makes me smile knowing that cousins (my mom and their kids) stay close. Thank you so much, Bill and Eleanor, for your love and support! I'm proud to do this for Clayton and for Mike.

My Grandparents (Grandma and Grandpa "H") were incredibly kind - their donation is so very much appreciated! My Grandpa is a survivor of colon cancer, so his name will be placed with love on my jersey as well.  My Grandma wrote a "memories" book several years ago, and I was able to get a copy of it for myself very recently. Reading all about her life and random memories and stories was and is so special to me! Funny stories of she and Grandpa meeting, falling in love, and their life together just touched my heart! They are both amazing people. I'm thankful and lucky to be a part of their family. I love you both so very much!

Jack is a partner at the law firm where my husband is also a partner. He and his wife, Susie, were incredibly kind to donate and help me reach my goal. I used to see Jack all the time when I was a runner for the law firm. (FYI, that means I ran their documents, etc. around town. Not that I was a "runner" like I am trying to be now...) While I have rarely seen them in recent years, I am touched to have their support. Thank you!

Rob is a friend from long ago. Scott and I both knew him independently before we got married, but he's our friend together, now, too. He's a great guy! I'm thankful to have his support. Rob shared that his Mom is currently battling lung cancer. I'm proud to wear her name on my jersey, so a Son can honor his Mom. Rob, my prayers are with your Mom and with your entire family. Thank you again. It means so much to me.

Todd and Trish are one of the most fun couples I've met. Trish works at the law firm where my husband works, and she and I used to be buddies back when I worked at the law firm, too! We are still buddies. Trish is gorgeous and kind and, did I mention that she's gorgeous? She's got a heart of gold, and she and Todd are awesome. Trish shared that her Mom died of Cancer when Trish was just 19 years old. Broke my heart to read this, but it makes me proud that I can pay tribute to her Mom's life by writing her name on my jersey. If Trish is anything like her Mom was, I know she was an amazing woman. Thank you, Trish and Todd! I miss you guys!

Carol and Donna are two people that I was lucky enough to meet because my mom and my step-dad met and fell in love. Despite the fact I was "married in" to their extended family, I have never felt like I wasn't 110% a part of the family. Carol was the Athletics Director at the high school I attended three years, and when my life was soooo over because I had to move there - he was a big help in plugging me in with the cross country team. Which all comes back to right I'm running again. So Carol, if you read this - I partially blame you for this insanity. And I love it! You are both so awesome and I'm thankful for any time we are able to spend together. Can't wait to see you again. Thanks for always being so loving and supportive. You rock!

Joe and Amy are a gorgeous couple. Inside and out. I met Amy through a mutual friend who thought she and I would get along. And we did! They have a precious son named Evan who was born just 10 days after my middle daughter. Amy makes me smile. We even walk-jogged together at the gym for my recovery day this morning. Bless her for meeting me much earlier than she would have preferred! I'm thankful to know two great people who have a pretty awesome little boy, too. You are all so special to me - and my entire family! Thanks for being you. Don't change a thing - I mean it. Thank you so much for your love and support!

Last, but not least this week - Greg and Michelle. I always love receiving their Christmas card because as I watch their two daughters grow each year, I think about my three girls growing. The "sisters" aspect is so special to me! Greg is a partner at the law firm where my husband is a partner. While I feel like I should see them way more often than I do - we live pretty close to each other - I rarely have the chance. However, they are always so kind and fun when I have been around them in the past. Thank you for your support and donation, Greg and Michelle!

In other news:

This post just "officially" took me two hours to write! How awesome is that?! I wouldn't change a minute of it for the world. Taking the time to reflect on each person who has made a donation and shown their love and support for me is nothing short of fabulous. Again, I have some amazing people in my life! Thank you all for the inspiration and lessons on being generous.

With that said, the mileage update will just have to happen tomorrow. This tired mama needs to sleep, pronto! Have a happy week!