Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Running for Anthony; Running for Life

I've given myself (and others) so many excuses over the years about why I can't exercise. Funny enough, my knee has truly been a large part of my problem...sometimes it's just been a really good excuse. But when my orthopedist told me that if I wanted to run, making it clear it's not something he loves the idea of for anyone, all he would ask is that I start slowly.

So I did. I started in June with the Couch to 5K running program. I found that I was able to skip a week, and then a day here and there. I completed the program in 7 weeks instead of 9. And once I had run 3.1 miles a few times inside on a treadmill, I decided to give running outside a try. So on the first cool Saturday in September, I stepped out...ready to go. At one mile, my knee completely gave out on me and I had to practically drag myself back home (thankfully, three houses away). I was so discouraged and angry.

Back to my orthopedist who told me that the popliteal cyst behind my knee was back. I'm on anti-inflammatories now, and running again. My first run was 3 weeks ago. I made a mile and stopped, just wanting to take it slowly.

Today I ran 3.0 miles.

TODAY, I ran 3.0 miles.

Can you tell I'm still in a little bit of a shock? I. feel. GREAT. My knee is happy, my body is happy, I am happy.

And on Saturday, I will run my first "race" (I'm not racing anyone, I promise!). I am running in the Louisiana Organ Procurement Agency's Run for Life. It is a 5K (3.1 miles) and I'll be running with my dad and my father-in-law. My mom, mother-in-law and Anthony will do the 1/2 mile walk.

I am running to raise awareness for organ donation. But I'm also running for Anthony. The baby who was so sick that he might not have made it to transplant, except for his awesome team of doctors. The kid, who even when he's sick, has a smile for me and wants to tell me he loves me. The kid, who was throwing up last week, thanking me for holding him while he was throwing up.

I'm running for Benjamin. The baby who reminded me that normal is only what we define it as. The kid who is so FULL of life that I sometimes forget that he needs a snuggle and gentle hand. The kid who just grabbed my leg and said, "You needed a hug, I think." He was right. I did.

I'm not raising money, I'm not asking for donations. All I'm asking for is you to remember how important life is - and to consider being an organ donor.


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