Many of you know of the struggles our family faced two years ago, and how my running career was spawned by the desire to outrun those events. What you may not know is that at the root of the struggles was a battle my husband Billy was waging with Colitis. It started slowly. Seemingly benignly. But it quickly shook our world in a way that changed Billy, and “us”, forever.
We came to find – much later – that it was Colitis that he suffered with, Colitis that sent him to Howard County Hospital for 5 weeks, Colitis that he and the doctors couldn’t get under control with drugs or treatments and Colitis that stole 80 pounds off his 6′ frame taking him down to a wispy 135 pounds.
It was Colitis that weakened him to the point where he could no longer walk, that sent us to Johns Hopkins hospital and the amazing Dr. Matt Hueman (and team), ultimately requiring the surgical removal of his entire Large Intestine. 5 Emergency surgeries. 5 Months in hospitals. Months and months of recovery. A solid year stolen from our family. And we are the lucky ones… Many who struggle with Crohns & Colitis do so for years – a lifetime, even. Our battle was short and fierce, but we are lucky to no longer have to wage that battle.
To bring some closure to that period, I have decided to participate in the Team Challenge Crohns & Colitis Half Marathon fundraiser. I am running this half marathon for several reasons – First and foremost is to raise as much money as is humanly possible to aid in the search for a cure for these sucky diseases. Second is to publicly pay tribute to my strong, sweet, fighter of a husband. Third is to support and cheer for others who fight the fight every day, and possibly share our story and lend our support. And finally, as a gift to myself, because my running began as a way to run away from that terrible time in my life. It was my escape. Now, it is a tool I can use to make a difference in other people’s lives, to contribute, and to run TOWARD a goal. Every dollar helps. Every mile has purpose. Please support me, Billy, and the millions who suffer with these diseases. Please donate today.
To learn more about Team Challenge, visit us here.
To learn more about Crohn’s & Colitis, visit here.