Many of us have been inspired by the awareness creating phenomenon of the Ice-Bucket Challenge. In my case, I had heard about the scary disease called ALS mainly through Lou Gehrig’s story or the best-selling memoir Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom. I knew that ALS was a devastating disease, but, like with so many things in life that did not impact me directly, I did not think about ALS often or at all. The Ice-Bucket Challenge changed all that for me. It changed me in that I felt compelled to make a public statement on Facebook that I would help make a difference with the disease. I felt the obligation to follow through.
A busy life got in the way, however, and I almost forgot to follow through. I had written down that I needed to make a donation to the ALS Association, but it kept getting postponed and could have very easily “fallen off of the map” at any time.
Gratefully, in another part of my life, I was inspired by others to really try to make a difference in my health and fitness level by stretching myself to reach a goal I had never achieved. Something inspired me to run my first marathon. I had always had many reasons why I shouldn’t run a marathon: “It’s too hard on the body!”, “It takes too much time!”, “I don’t have anything to prove.” Very logical reasons, you might say. But now, there was something that did not make sense pushing me to do it, and I could not get it out of my system. I wanted to go on a quest and achieve something hard that challenged me and even scared me a little. So, in a moment of reckless passion, I went to the Houston marathon website to sign up.
I knew that it was hard to get a spot because more people signed up each year than there were spots for. As I suspected, the marathon was sold out, but much to my surprise, there was a Run for a Reason program that allowed you to “buy your way in” by making a nice-sized donation to a charity. I immediately remembered my ALS commitment, and saw that the ALS Association Texas Chapter was an official Run for a Reason charity, so I was even more excited, pulled out my credit card and signed up. I was pretty psyched that I had now completed a personal donation to ALS and had committed to running my first marathon! I again got on Facebook and announced I was running on January 18, 2015, knowing that a public declaration of commitment would motivate me to finish the race.
So that is my ALS story so far. Now here is the part about our ALS opportunity. Many of you have taken the Ice Bucket Challenge like I did and many have donated to help fund research to find a cure for ALS. Here is an opportunity for both you and I to challenge ourselves. From now until the race on January 18, 2015 I pledge to match dollar for dollar any donation made to my Run for a Reason campaign. I challenge you to take the time to make a donation of any size and to double the impact of your donation automatically through my match. Whether you donate the cost of a cup of coffee, the cost of a nice dinner out, or the cost of a weekend getaway trip, I will be doing the same. Our team effort will have a lasting impact on the following:
1) We will provide hope and care to the approximately 5,600 people annually who are diagnosed with ALS and the approximately 30,000 Americans who have the disease at any given time.
2) We will advance the mission of The ALS Association to lead the fight to treat and cure ALS through global research and nationwide advocacy, while also empowering people with the disease and their families to live fuller lives by providing them with compassionate care and support.
If you feel the inspiration to donate, all you need to do is click the following link: Fundraising Page
Thank you in advance and, as Thanksgiving approaches, I am grateful that you have taken the time to read this far and for your support of my endeavors. May you and your loved ones enjoy abundant blessings through the Holidays and in 2015!
Kindness in words creates confidence.
Kindness in thinking creates profoundness.
Kindness in giving creates love.
– LAO- TZU