My time for this race didn't matter. I was running it for my dear friend, co-coach, neighbor and biking buddy Yvonne. She is one of my hugest supporters and has biked most of my race courses with me and has always cheered for me. It was my turn to be supportive of her.
Some times timing is everything. On the day after I had taken Yvonne to the Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource Center for an appointment, Robert Vigorito announced a new CTA running event that would benefit the Claudia Mayer Cancer Center : The Irongirl Half Marathon. There was no question that I would do this event in honor and with love for my friend and to support the CMCRC. The people I had met there had showed so much care and compassion for my friend that I was over whelmed. They had been through the same experience themselves and were beyond caring and an incredible source of information. (Claudia Mayer had also been the wife of one of my first doctors.)
Some times timing is unbelievable. The day I took my friend to one of her very last radiation treatments I happened to meet a dear family friend there. It was so sad because there is only one reason why people are there. He was going through his own radiation Cancer treatment and he let me know that his wife had just died of Cancer a few days before. I ran that day – it was the only thing that helped me deal with it.
Incredibly the two people I knew who were going through treatment were the strongest people I knew; I think you have to be strong to over come cancer. It is also incredible the number of friends that I know that are dealing with cancer. Another very dear friend is currently in radiation isolation due to her treatment.
So me running a race for 13.1 miles is nothing compared to what they have been through … but it meant a lot to me to do it. I prayed for my friends and they know that I care.
One of my favorite parts of the Iron Girl course was where it went past a field where Yvonne and I both coached field hockey together. It was special and she was with me in thoughts and prayers.
Happily Yvonne did her first bike ride (with me!) since her treatments finished just a few days ago. She will be a survivor and I am so glad I ran today for her. One day we will celebrate with a run or bike ride together through Central Park. She used to work for the NYC RR Club; it will be spectacular!
Tremendous thanks to Gwen for running with me – I so enjoyed it. Thanks to all the volunteers and spectators on the course – it is a good feeling to see so many friends along the way. Saw a lot of folks that make the Columbia Community the wonderful place that it is: the Police Chief, Victor Broccolino (CEO of HC Hospital standing on the corner across from the hospital), UCF Support Brian Satola, and of course the wonderful Robert Vigorito.
I hope everyone enjoyed the race – I certainly did! – it will be a Columbia classic event. I think IG Half Marathon will do for running what IG Tri did for triathlons; bring a lot more women into a sport that will help them achieve the unbelievable.
I also hope that everyone stays healthy.