This Sunday my wife and I are running the San Francisco Half-marathon in honor of a friend’s son, Matt Mingus. My friend Kat wrote this message to our Team In Training participants that I wanted to share with you since it is what the true meaning of why we keep running and fundraising for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Here is the letter:
All of you have really stepped up to the plate and outside of your comfort zones in one way or another. You have asked anyone and everyone for money (and I hear you have raised A LOT – right on!). You have run at the crack of dawn, cold winter nights, and even in the rain. And, some of you even ventured into the dreaded ice baths after already freezing your @^%$& off. And I know from experience (as a former team member) you have always ended your workouts and runs with a smile and a very self deserving pat on the back no matter how much it hurts!
Like you, Matthew is in the home stretch, he recently finish phase 4 of 6 of his treatments, and is officially in school as a kindergartner. He will begin his second to last treatment phase this Tuesday, which will last for 67 days, it will include 8 different chemo agents, some in pill form, some directly into his spine, some IV push and some I have to inject in his arm at home (which has to be the most traumatic experience for all of Team Ming.) Somewhere in April, Matthew will begin his last phase of treatment – the Maintenance phase which will last just shy of 3 years but will (with great hope) enable him to return to his regularly scheduled, fun filled, sometimes trouble making life of a 5 year old, that we are all looking forward to.
Through our journey, we have met other incredibly strong families who have endured stem cell transplants, relapses, and a myriad of medical and psychological difficulties as a result of blood diseases, which serves as a constant (sometimes frightful) reality check for us.
For these reasons, we as a team walk, we run, we hike, we bike, we tri. As a team we endure, we raise money and awareness and we don’t ever EVER quit! (There’s no crying in baseball and there’s no quitters on Team Ming!)
So when you hit that wall; remember Matthew, Doug, your personal connections to LLS and all those you run to honor. That energy and a little relentless forward motion (….and for some of you bacon, beer, wine or spirits) will get you to that finish line.
And, a few words from Matthew…
“I would like them to know that I love the team and thank you for running. And, I like the guy Randy.”
With great respect and appreciation, the Mingus Family.