CALL FOR SUPPORT
Family and friends, help me reach my goal of $2,500 as I run the Chicago Marathon on the Misericordia HeartRacer team in the name of improving the quality of life for people of all ages with developmental disabilities. Whether it’s monetary donations or just being there the day of the marathon, by helping out - you are making a difference - a huge difference. You create your own story and your own destiny. What you value, what you experience, how you go about tackling this life – it's up to you. We only have one shot at life so let’s make it count together.
Read on or click the link to donate now: http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/billybruton/misericordia-bank-of-america-2012-marathon
Misericordia is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing care and services to people of all ages with developmental disabilities. Over 600 kids and adults call Misericordia home. Many of the residents at Misericordia either don’t have a home or their family is unable to provide the care they need. The compassionate efforts of the doctors, nurses, priests, nuns, staff and volunteers at Misericordia - through spirituality, dignity and respect - create just the right environment residents need to feel encouraged and gain a sense of independence. Misericordia adds value to the lives of their residents as well as the community by facilitating employment opportunities and recreational activities for their residents. To learn more about Misericordia, click here - http://www.misericordia.com/
If I reach my $2500 goal, half your donations go toward Claire’s Crusade. Claire is my dear friend’s daughter who was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome when she was nine months old. The onset of Rett Syndrome is random and most often affects little girls early in their life. Claire’s mom, Colleen best describes what it’s like, “Imagine the symptoms of Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Parkinson’s, Epilepsy and a variety of anxiety disorders all wrapped up in one little girl – this is Rett Syndrome. Imagine tying your arms behind your back, tying your feet together and taping your mouth shut – this is Rett Syndrome.”
Claire turned two this past April, with her bright blue eyes and curly blonde hair, she is an absolute angel. She’s got so much spunk but has a challenging road ahead. Claire will never walk or talk again and will need 24/7 care for as long as she lives. Currently, there is no cure. Claire’s Crusade is dedicated to raising funds for treatment of Rett Syndrome and research for a cure. To learn more about Claire’s Crusade and follow Claire’s and her parent’s journey, click here - http://clairescrusade.org/
The amount of time and dedication that goes into preparing for the big day is intensive, but it’s nothing compared to what the mercy workers at Misericordia and Claire’s parents go through on a daily basis taking care of some of the most amazing individuals on the planet. Please help me, my friends at Misericordia and Claire’s parents reach our goals!
RIGHTEOUS HUMBLING: IT’S MORE THAN JUST RUNNING 26.2 miles
There’s these things many experience when running a marathon and when eying that "finish line", some may even call them righteous. For me, it’s the right thing to do, partly for personal fulfillment but mostly to make the world around me a better place. For instance, there’s the personal transformation, both physically and mentally. In a sense, it’s an intense regimen for mind and body, working in concert and often at odds with one another. While our mind is busy focusing and managing the discipline for the body, the body is busy keeping up with the demands imposed by the mind. Rain or shine, I wouldn’t have it any other way – it’s going through the profound test of your patience, focus and determination that makes it all worth it. Daily practice runs, cross training, strength training, eating right. The willingness to be sore, maybe even hurt, enriches the victory of crossing that finish line.
Serving the community selflessly and with love is important to me and makes me all the more determined. By volunteering my time, the quality of life around me improves. I learn so much about healing, compassion and the human spirit.
Chicago Marathon 2010: Running for breast cancer… and Brandon
In 2010 I ran the marathon for Pink Streak, a team of people across the country dedicated to spreading awareness and promoting support for breast cancer programs. Shortly after my announcement to run the Chicago Marathon I got some very sad news. My boss’s son Brandon Janik, whom I’ve known for many years, was diagnosed with cancer. A young man, not even out of high school – thinking about what college he wants to go to goes to the doctor because he wasn’t feeling well. A test or two later, the doctor tells him, ‘you might have cancer…” His life and the world around him changed in an instant. How is anyone supposed to understand the crushing unfairness of this? I transformed all my anger, sadness, worry, questions and disbelief of his diagnosis into determination and decided to dedicate my marathon journey to his personal battle with cancer.
I am proud to announce Brandon Janik is cancer free and celebrating life. He is enjoying his collegiate years as a Marquette Golden Eagle. I am proud to know you Brandon and I’m extremely happy you are making the most of your cherished life.
In the grand scheme of things…
Sure, back in 2010 and now there were times I doubted myself and wanted to give up – but then, when I’d think about Brandon or Claire or the residents at Misericordia who are in the fight of their lives - fighting to live and just have a “normal” day like the rest of us. I often think of the people that love and care for them - my boss, Claire’s parents, the incredible network of people at Misericordia – and the struggles they face, they’re true heroes. The obstacles these amazing people face make my own doubts and hardships seem trivial and my outlook for my own journey from “impossible” to “doable.”
To Misericordia, thanks for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of this extraordinary team. I’m humbled to be running alongside others striving towards making a difference in the world we live in and especially the selfless work of Misericordia. Thank you for the million acts of kindness, the never-ending patience, and unconditional love you have shown to the awesome residents of Misericordia and their families! I am honored to be a volunteer and a Misericordia HeartRacer at the Chicago Marathon. I look forward to crossing the finish line with you on October 7, 2012.
To my family and friends and the amazing support you’ve given me throughout my entire life. Each of you has added real value and substance to my being and helped me become the best version of me. From the depths of my heart, I thank you and cherish your support. With you in my heart, I look forward to crossing the finish line with all of you cheering me on.
And to anyone suffering from or affected by disability or a life-changing ailment - I commend your spirit. Even when things get really hard I’ll never stop believing in the power of good and will never stop believing in you and the strengths you find. Thank you for keeping me humble and for making me a stronger person. When I cross that finish line, it’s in your honor.
I’m so grateful for your support. I thank each and every one of you for going above and beyond in showing how much goodness is still out there, how much goodness is within you, and how much goodness there is still left to give. I am proud to run this year’s marathon for Misericordia, for little Claire bear and I’m proud to run for you. We are going to have an amazing time getting to where we need to go - I hope you stay with me on this journey because your support is essential to making it happen. Many, many thanks to my family and friends - I'm sending lots of love your way! xo
MAKE A DIFFERENCE, COME SHOW YOUR SUPPORT
For anyone that have not had the pleasure of experiencing a day at the marathon in any form, I ask that you go out to the course on race day and take it all in. I mean, how often do you get 40,000 strong running 26.2 miles over the course of a few hours –all running in the same direction – all running for reasons bigger and more powerful then any of us combined. Not to mention the one million plus that are out there literally charged with positive energy – cheering us on as we pass through their neighborhoods.
Marathon day is unlike any other; everyone sincerely feels the endless supply of hope, promise, love, excitement, positivity that is shared. Not to mention, if you get a chance to come on out – you’ll have the privilege of meeting my friends from Misericordia, as well as sweet little Claire Bear and her amazing parents. Thanks again everybody – would seriously love your support now and come race day!
I WANT TO DONATE!
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