Last March, March 25, 2015 to be exact, goes down as the most life-changing day. You think that day will be your wedding day or the day your child was born but this surpassed those days as my most emotional day to date. It was the day of Brody’s diagnosis. It seems like lately God has been challenging me to face some deep emotions that I had yet to experience until my late 30’s. But, I can boldly say that the past year and a half has brought challenges I was never expecting and it’s been grueling, and enlightening. I have felt pain and loneliness that has shaken me to my core. To be able to keep on and put a smile on my face has been a gift but it takes work sometimes. I have had lots of help along the way, though, and now I feel like it’s time to give back.
It’s something that I have been toying with since last fall when I first discovered the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation online. There are races in some large cities across the U.S. called Starry Nights. This 8k (5 miles) is unique because it’s 28,000 steps for the 28,000 kids living with brain tumors. 100% of the fundraising goes towards the world’s largest pediatric brain tumor foundation. The goal is to raise money for research and awareness for pediatric brain tumors, which cause more deaths annually that any other childhood cancer.
So, it is with excitement that we have decided to organize a race in Knoxville this fall! This event will be about running for a cure but also about bringing families and children together. There isn’t community support specifically for families and children facing brain tumors in this region and it can be very scary. We want to provide a fun event that will start bridges of support and networking of families, while also raising money for more research. There’s so much we don’t know about brain tumors.
Please consider supporting this event. More details will come in months to follow. But, mark your calendars for November 6, 2016. This afternoon/ evening event will be more than just a race. There will be food, children’s activities, raffles, a fun run of 1-mile, the 8k race, and finally a lantern-lighting ceremony as the sun sets. I expect to see and feel many more emotions as we bring friends and families together. Plan on joining us!
You can join the Facebook page or wait for the registration page through the national organization that will be coming. You can also reach out to me if you want to help. No task is too big or small! We need help from friends and community to make this happen. We need sponsors, volunteers, connections to donate goods and gift cards, and people to spread the word. If any or all of those interest you, let me know! And if nothing else, pray that we can pull this off!