Moms In Training

Running is all the rage right now. I see you all with your FitBit and RunKeeper status updates and I envy your motivation! I was a certified couch potato long before becoming a parent, and now it’s that much worse. Who has time to exercise between laundry and meals and playdates – not to mention the scads of doctor appointments now that Jack is in treatment for cancer?! Sometimes I can hardly get myself motivated to walk the block from work to Starbucks!

But there is something that has motivated me to get out and walk: a good cause! Especially for others in Jack’s situation – those dealing with life-threatening illnesses like cancer. This is why, for the second year in a row, I’m participating in the Make-a-Wish Foundation’s Walk For Wishes. Getting out of the house and walking with others who have a similar goal in mind is an amazing feeling. I can’t recommend it enough!

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Me, prepped for a fundraising 5k!

Another wonderful organization – The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society – recently sent me information on a new program they are launching. This program is tailored to moms like me – moms who want to do some good in the world while meeting other moms and doing something healthy…moms who might not be in shape but would love to participate in a 5k for a GREAT cause. Moms In Training is a flexible nine-week program that gets moms together on Saturday mornings to prepare to walk or run a 5K. And for a little extra motivation, participants can dedicate their walk to someone special, as my friend Beth did for Jack two years ago, in order to raise money for blood cancer research.

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Jack wearing his Team in Training shirt.

Moms in Training is all over the San Francisco Bay Area, with Saturday morning workouts in San Francisco, the East Bay, the North Bay, the Peninsula, the South Bay, and even down in Santa Cruz. The final event – the 5K – will take place June 22nd in Alameda, CA. Those who want to participate pay a $50 registration fee and commit to raising just $500 in exchange for amazing support and coaching from the LLS.

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(c) LLS

If you aren’t located in the Bay Area, don’t fret – the New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Seattle, and Washington DC chapters also offer the Moms in Training program!

To participate in this program, sign up by April 12th! And if you sign up, please let me know so I can help spread the word about your efforts to raise money for blood cancers while doing something healthy for yourself!

Jack will once again be an honoree, but this time for a Moms In Training team here in the Bay Area. WOO HOO! Check back for a link to their fundraising page soon!

NOTE: This is not a sponsored post and I have received no compensation from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society or anyone else for writing about their Moms In Training program. All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own.

Walking For Wishes

One of the hardest parts about this portion of the cancer journey is the lack of attainable milestones. There are three phases to Jack’s treatment regimen, and we’re in the third and longest portion – Maintenance. While Maintenance is supposed to be the least intense phase because the treatments are more spread out, they stretch out across two and a half years. Jack started Maintenance in October 2012, so our next milestone is…

March 15, 2015.

That’s a long way off. Right now it feels like the end of treatment will never come. It seems like we have an endless number of doctor appointments, medications, procedures, blood draws, and dressing changes ahead of us. And through March 2015 we’ll surely worry about fevers and infections and side effects and fatigue and keeping our jobs and paying bills.

Rather than focusing on the depressing difficulties ahead, we distract ourselves. One way to do that is to create other things to look forward to, which Jack has done through the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Last year he met with the Bay Area chapter of Make-A-Wish and submitted his wish to meet Lady Gaga (go check out his video!). We’ve been patiently waiting for his turn since.

Recently Lady Gaga had to cancel her tour due to her own health challenges. Not only are we sad to hear that she is having health problems, but we are bummed that the granting of Jack’s wish – a milestone we were looking forward to – will be delayed, as well. That wish means a lot to our whole family. It means hope and inspiration and excitement and happiness and light in the dark. It means some manner of relief, which is difficult to be found during a cancer battle no matter how many people offer support. I’m sure you can understand why we are a bit fixated on it.

With Jack’s wish being delayed and new waves of exhaustion settling upon us, we decided to distract and rally ourselves with a new goal: the East Bay Walk For Wishes. The Walk For Wishes is a 5k walk that raises money for the Make-a-Wish Foundation. The East Bay Area chapter hopes to raise enough funds to grant wishes to sixteen children – a total of $120,000.

Our team is called Jack’s Juggernauts and we are (at the moment) eleven people strong! Our team aims to raise $7,500, which is the average cost of ONE child’s wish. My personal goal is to get to $1500 and right now I’m only a little over $400 away from that. I know some very generous people!

Many of you have just finished your taxes and are either getting back refunds or bemoaning your tax bill. Either way – you can do yourself a favor for next year and get a tax deduction by donating to our walk. You don’t have to itemize for donations to count and, in many cases, your employer will match your donation.

If you would like to help us out in our efforts to rally our family and help out kids who are facing life-threatening medical conditions, please donate. Any amount helps.

Support Jack's Juggernauts!

A Gift that Gives

Hey readers.  I hope you all will join me in helping my friend and fellow blogger Alecia raise awareness and funds for a rare disorder that her 9 month old niece suffers from called Food Protein-Induced Entercolitis Syndrome (FPIES).  Those suffering from this disorder cannot tolerate many of the proteins found in everyday foods, which can result in uncontrollable vomiting and diarrhea after eating and can lead to dehydration and even fatal shock.  I know it kills me every time my son is sick – I can hardly imagine how awful it is when food is the thing that makes your child sick.  If you’d like to help, there are several things you can do:

Please pass this information on and keep Alecia’s family in your thoughts!

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