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-Erluis, July 20th-
Hey all! Thank you for your interest in our team's fundraising effort for Be The Match Walk+Run! Here's a little backstory of why this fundraiser and race itself means a lot to me personally:
In May of 2017, I participated in "The Survival Race" 5k obstacle course with a bunch of my college buddies. We ran up and down rolling hills, carried sacks of sand in circles, swam in mucky water, and even crawled through three-foot-deep mud trenches. It was an amazing feeling; we really pushed ourselves and tested our endurance. I felt great, in the best shape of my life. Little did i know that about 5 weeks later, I'd be in the ER asking the doctors why I can't play a casual game of volleyball anymore without feeling like I was about to lose consciousness. Well, after many tests and a bunch of sleepless nights, we found out that reason was leukemia (T-ALL).
I was rushed into treatment right away, leaving everything else as an afterthought. I spent months in the hospital, watching my body deteriorate from the chemo, medicine and just overall lack of physical activity. After a 3.5 week hospital stay in November, I lost so much muscle mass (specifically in my legs) that I actually had to relearn how to walk. Going from climbing ropes and running 5k's to not being able to open a bottle of water on my own was the most frustrating and, frankly, depressing thing I've ever had to deal with.
You see, I ran cross country and track in high school for all 4 years. I loved the races but I grew to hate the rigor of the practices, so I stopped running in college. Running was boring, racing was fun. But as the saying goes: "you don't know what you got 'til it's gone." Now faced with just walking being a challenge, I could not wait to get right and run a 5k again. So here we are! With the initial treatment not advancing well, a bone marrow transplant was really the only other option. The process took place in January and I've slowly regained my strength little by little since. I still can't run, and I can barely jog, but I'll be doing my best to train up for this event, my real "Survival Race". I owe it all to the doctors who looked and still look after me to this day, to my family/friends for doing more than I could've ever imagined them to, and lastly to modern medicine.
There are so many others who are not as fortunate as I have been. So many very young children who have to deal with this process that completely wiped an in-shape adult like me out. So many elderly with prior health issues that make this disease even more dangerous. A simple $5 donation from one person may not mean much individually, but collectively these donations will go a long way to saving actual lives.
Thank you for taking the time out of your day to read this, and I hope you will join us in trying to raise money and kick cancer's ass. God Bless.
Our team is participating in this year's Be The Match Walk+Run because it’s crucial to join the fight against blood cancer. Join us in helping raise funds to save more patients’ lives!
We'd like you to join us by either making a financial gift or by being a member of our team and helping us reach our fundraising goal.
The money we raise will:
Please support us and together we can show blood cancer it has met its match.
Every 3 minutes someone is diagnosed with blood cancer.
Thousands of patients with blood cancers like leukemia or other diseases like sickle cell anemia, need a marrow transplant to survive. Most patients don’t have a fully matched donor in their family — and that’s when they turn to Be The Match®. By participating in a Be The Match Walk+Run, or donating funds, you are providing life-saving support to those patients in need. Join the fight.