Monday, April 28, 2014

The Power of Purple

This past weekend I had the honor of running the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in Washington, DC as part of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training. I have been fortunate to complete numerous half and full marathons since I started running, but this was my second one for TNT. TNT is the group that got me running, and while the feeling of crossing a marathon finish line is hard to put into words, the feeling of crossing it while wearing a purple TNT shirt knowing you raised money for a great cause just intensifies it.

The weekend was super emotional but reminded me why I put others first. It may not have gotten me anywhere in many people’s eyes, but it makes me feel like there is a reason I am here. I may be directionless, but as long as I am able to help people, I will keep on going.
I began running years ago after my best friend was diagnosed with Chronic Myleogenous Leukemia. I wasn’t able to fight her cancer for her, but I could run. Flashing back to my first marathon, I can only smile about how different I was then compared to now when I run. To read the full story of my best friend and why I decided to run another TNT race, click here.

The entire weekend was inspirational. It started with the drive to DC that resulted in me reaching my goal of 200,000 miles on my car. It took a long, long time to get there and I am super excited. Once my Team and I got to DC and checked into the hotel, it was off to the race expo to start our journey. It was crazy busy, but so awesome. Picking up our special TNT bibs and visiting the TNT booth to create signs, take photos, and honor our heroes was moving. I was there to run but I was also there in support of all those people that can’t run.
Later in the night was the Team in Training Inspirational Dinner and boy was it inspirational. As we walked into the banquet room, we walked through a group cheering us on and thanking us for our efforts, incredible feeling. I was a part of Team Delaware, but also part of a much larger team — the team united in the fight to end blood cancer. We loaded up on carbs, listened to guest speakers and got pumped for the race in the morning. The Delaware team truly is an amazing group of people.

Race morning I woke up early and got ready for the day. I put on my purple race shirt with Danny and Dom’s names, my purple and black tutu (oh yes), laced up my sneakers and headed on my way. We get to the start line, the horn blows and off we go.
It was a beautiful day for a race through the streets of DC. I was keeping a good pace and feeling good. There were rubs and aches but nothing I have not been through before. As I counted down the miles, I was rolling. Any problem I was experiencing, or about to experience, was wiped away with crowds of strangers cheering me on and thanking me for helping the Society. The funny signs, the volunteer at a water stop who loves the San Francisco Giants and cheered for me and my Giants hat, the survivors on the course, the yelling of my name, truly amazing experience.

As the temperature climbed and I began to slow down, I entered the last tunnel on the course. It was stuffy and hot, not ideal running conditions. As I started to fade, the music began to play and a coach from another chapter ran up to me. He asked how I was. We chatted and then he thanked me. That was all I needed to get back on pace. We high fived and off I went. I picked up speed and could see the finish line. I ran for Danny and Dom and I crossed the finish line. I looked down and damn if I didn’t set a PR. I may not be the fastest runner, but I lapped everyone on the couch that day. I received my Tiffany’s finisher necklace and met up with a fellow runner to head back to the hotel. My race for LLS was complete and I was proud.
I quickly showered, that hotel check out was soon, and got going. As I was waiting for a close friend, and lunch date, to pick me up I reflected on the day. No matter how bad my life may seem to me or others right now, I did something that not everyone else does, I put others first. It was tough to raise money, tough to get my training miles in, but there are better people worse off. There are people that would love to be out running on a beautiful day and can’t for a million different reasons. If I can run, I will run.

Of course what this has to do with Laura Bush should be quite obvious — she is one of the most giving people to ever walk this earth. She does amazing things for so many people and organizations. I don’t have her resources or power, but that doesn’t mean I can’t help others. There are very few selfless people on this planet but she is one of them. My quest to find happiness by putting myself first finally doesn’t mean I will neglect those that need me. I will always support great causes and people, that I hope never changes. What would Laura Bush do?


  1. Thank you for being my hero! It takes someone truly amazing to do something - like train for multiple races - out of the kindness of their heart. Because of you, I've never felt alone in my fight. I love you!