Lindsey Ramsak - 2018 Chicago Marathon for Misericordia


2018 Bank of America Chicago Marathon for Misericordia

Lindsey Ramsak - 2018 Chicago Marathon for Misericordia

This MS runner is making it a marathon for Misericordia.

Look out, Chicago. Runderdog is coming your way. And a heartfelt cause is driving me.


Because of the generosity of some wonderful folks,

the minimum marathon charity goal has been met.

However, additional gifts will greatly benefit Christy and Misericordia.

Thank you!

Here’s the rundown.

I have multiple sclerosis. I was diagnosed at 50. Then I was thrown by a hot young horse and suffered 12 fractures and a collapsed lung. An ER doctor told me I could have died that day.

But I didn't die.

As soon as I healed from those traumatic injuries, what did I do? I started running. Now, a few years down the road from that, I am pointing my MS-tingly toes towards the Chicago Marathon.

I'm not doing this for me, although I will surely reap fitness benefits from the marathon training process. I'm not even doing it for MS, although that is definitely a worthy cause.

I am committing to the Chicago Marathon in October 2018 in honor of my niece.

My sister’s daughter, who turned 40 this year, has profound special needs. Christy must depend on professional people to care for her own daily essentials. Those who know her immediately and unanimously recognize her simple acceptance of others and personal sense of joy, which are miles ahead of the rest of us. She's a champion in ways many people never have the opportunity to understand.

I am running the streets of Chicago next fall for Christy. And, as a marathon newbie, I will be sporting a charity bib. My race will benefit "Misericordia."

Misericordia Heart of Mercy, based on the north side of Chicago, is a wonderful community that serves more than 600 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and related special needs. Residents are treated with dignity and respect and compassion and creativity. My whole family has long appreciated the excellent care our Christy and so many others receive from those who serve at Misericordia.

Can I do 26.2 miles for Christy and Misericordia? It's the least I can do.

To clarify: I have done several half marathons (all in recent years), but I have never raced the full distance of 26.2 miles. This is a veritable stretch for me. And it may be risky, given my own personal health issues. 

I'm going for it.

Make no mistake. I am not naïve enough to assume that the worst MS symptoms cannot come my way with a vengeance, especially during this endeavor. My nearly daily vertigo could hit me with a whirl. My feet could go numb yet again. I could have even more frequent migraines. My vision could slip away, as it has in the past. I could face certain embarrassing and uncomfortable MS symptoms that (thankfully) would be new for me. The demyelinated spots along my spinal column could wreak all sorts of painful havoc. And I could be struck with the frequent and classic sudden-onset overwhelming MS fatigue that can make the marathoner's famous "wall" seem like a day at the park. I know this all too well. 

I get it. A full marathon may be too much for me -- at least, in the long run.

But I am all in.

I'm grateful for every step that I am able to run or walk. As an MSer, I know life could look very different for me than it currently does. So I am giving this a go, while I am still standing on my own two feet.

Every day, whether I am running a race with bold young (and not-so-young) veterans from Team RWB, lashing two high-energy dogs to my waist for canine cross-country jaunts, or sweating with the oldies in Silver Sneakers classes at the gym, I know that each day that I am able to pursue such goals is a gift.

So heads-up, Chicago. Runderdog is coming.

I won't be fast. Count me in anyway. Because I am kicking MS to the curb and running all-out for Christy. I will be counting on many others to cheer me on, help me support Misericordia, and maybe pass me a fresh cold water bottle on race day. 

Please pray for my endurance, stamina, and physical soundness -- especially on race day. Pray more for Christy and others' loved ones at Misericordia, who bravely face bigger challenges each day. And may God bless those who serve them so compassionately.

Let’s do this thing.

Thank you for visiting my page and for considering supporting this endeavor through encouragement, prayer, and perhaps even a financial contribution (of any amount). It all counts!

Donating through this website is simple, fast and totally secure. It is also the most efficient way to support my fundraising efforts. I can also accept business or personal checks, made out to "Misericordia Heart of Mercy." Upon receipt, I will add them to the "offline" total on this page, along with donor names and comments (if desired).

Donations are tax-deductible,

and donors promptly receive confirmation/documentation

from Misericordia (for tax reporting purposes).

Again, thanks for your support in any form. Please feel free to forward this to anyone who you think might want to help support this wonderful cause.