I've gone back and forth on whether or not I should write about this, but since this is my "journal" I am going to. I also am not going to post names, but if you are friends with me and this person you know who I am talking about.
Sometime in 2012, a Facebook friend messaged me and this other woman and said that we should become friends since we both loved to run. I didn't think much of it, noticed that we had run in some of the same races and we ended up becoming friends on Facebook.
As Mike and I started to meet more people in all areas of the Rochester running/triathlon scene, I noticed that this friend and I had a lot of the same friends. Which naturally makes sense.
The first time I "met" this person, it was when Mike and I were volunteering at the Rochester Marathon just the week before Wineglass. I cheered her on, she acknowledged me and said something like, "I need to get to the shitter!"
Yep, that is the kind of person she is. Not rude, just tough and does whatever she wants. I admire her for that, because I am rather shy and definitely don't say things like that (until you get to know me).
Our friend is a part of the triathlon group that we are a part of, as well as, #trailsroc. Another funny story about her is that when she did her first triathlon, she wore headphones not only during the run but on the bike too! She is deathly afraid of the bike, though with encouragement she is getting better at it. I had to laugh when she realized she got time added as a penalty (luckily she didn't get disqualified). She thought that people who were looking at her out on the course were just checking her out, rather than looking for people breaking the USAT rules!
We have gotten to know this person really well over the last few years, we hang out at training workouts, friends' houses and her house. Her and her husband do have a rather sweet pool after all.
Recently, we found out that she needs to undergo chemotherapy for her cancer after her most recent surgery didn't work the way it was supposed to.
In order to help her get through this, the running/triathlon community has come together to do what we can for her and her family. We have a "kick this thing's ass crew" group set up on Facebook, a Take Them a Meal calendar set up and a RunRaiser event scheduled to raise money.
I know that what we are doing isn't making her cancer-free, but I hope that it eases some of the worry so she can beat this thing! Which if I know this trail runner/triathlete/adventure racer/marathoner/ultramarathoner like I think I do, she is going to beat this just like she does everything else!
And I've realized that the running community is about more than just running.
It's about being there when one of our own needs us and to stop at nothing until they are whole again.