Marathon weekend is HERE! Whoa baby. If I’m saying whoa baby, imagine what Kevin is saying! 😜
Kevin runs Sunday – 26.2 miles through the beautiful streets of Chicago. Weather looks to be perfect for running & perfect for bundling up Kelly to cheer on Dad! Is there anything cuter than an infant stuck with their arms out in a warm suit?!
This marathon is the supreme culmination of the proverbial blood, sweat and tears – and I’m not just talking about the physical training. Kevin has poured his heart and soul into that though, for months and months. He committed in January and started pre training in the spring. He joined a running team and ran every Saturday morning at 6:30am with that team, on top of many days of training throughout the week. He didn’t bat an eye once Kelly was born and remained committed to his goal, when he would’ve had every right reason to bow out. If you would’ve told us a year ago this is where we’d be at, we both would’ve laughed in your face. Like, loudly. And yet here we are. I am so proud of Kevin. The risk he took in committing, the dedication he showed in pushing forward, the humor and attitude he brought to it all, the humble brags as the pounds melted away and the miles got faster, the real talk about pain points, the never give up attitude, relentless positivity through it all.
You all know I hate that dang phrase but here we are, yet again. “Everything happens for a reason” 61538, Beef 0. It’s no coincidence that three years ago today, we were at peak happiness in life. When Kevin crosses the finish line, it’ll be one day shy of the three year anniversary of our colposcopy, the appt that sent us to an oncologist and started the never ending marathon of our life. This entire weekend is going to be wrapped in so many emotions, likely quite intensified given the timing and the cause. But I just can’t stop thinking how cool it is, the timing. This year we get a triumph. This year Kevin gets to accomplish something that is incredible and I get to be bragging about my hubby. This year we get a big, joyful, sweaty hug, with our son squished between us and Hallie looking down on us. We are adding this triumph in a year that already gave us our ultimate redemption in Kelly. Our tides are turning, that’s what this medal means to us! We get to create pockets of celebration in a month so full of devastation. We continue our come back from cancer and immeasurable loss. Wildly different people, totally different life and crazy beautiful all at the same time. (See, the power of and, not but!)
While we can’t compare cancer and marathons for obvious reasons, now that we’ve gone through both, I can see that there are a lot of parallels between them. It’s a fight, it’s a battle. There will be really good times (miles) and really bad times (miles). There will be so many conflicting emotions. Anger at the pain. Pride in the feat. Fear of what’s to come. Hope for the finish. Knowledge that if you let it consume you it will but if you fight with everything you have, you’ll be part of something so much bigger than you can even imagine. As hard as it is and as much as the anger at the pain runs deep, if you embrace it, so much good can come from it – and yes, you’re totally allowed to resent it in the moment. At the end though, when all is said and done you’re a changed person, for the good and bad you’ve endured. And what you do with that is the legacy you leave. You’ve ran the marathon of cancer a million times already Kevin, you are more than prepared to crush this goal that’ll be added to your amazing legacy.
We are so proud of you and can’t wait to cheer you on mile by mile! When you are hitting your stride, may you stay in that stride and really recognize the good for the good that it is, even if it’s a painful good. Whether it lasts a mile at a time, three miles at a time or three steps at a time, embrace it!Embrace the joy in this amazing physical feat of yours. Even more, be proud of the husband and father you’ve been through the real marathon of our life. When the miles are hard and the pain is real, know that this too shall pass! This life is so fleeting, these troubles won’t last forever (our wedding song lyric that was clearly prophetic). In those hard miles, may you realize the impact you’ve had by running this race for so many people fighting cancer and the pain you’ve helped to fight for them – and the pain you’ve helped to fight for you, for me, for Hallie, for Kelly. Watching you tackle this and the way you’ve rebuilt our life in doing so has restored my hope in how good we can have it despite all we’ve endured. And may you not be *too* bitter that I kind of made you “volunteer” for this. 😂 May your playlist be perfectly what you need, may your battery last the entire race. May there be porta potties when you need them, but actually, may you not need them! 😜 May you feel super celebrated all weekend and may you know how big of an accomplishment this is physically but that this race truly is so much bigger than 26.2. It’s further confirmation that we can literally get through anything! Run, run, run to the big hug with your son that awaits you and of course, to this wife of yours that will obviously have a beer in hand for you, maybe even two. And I won’t even be mad when you look at that beer more lovingly than me! 😉 You’re our hero!
And big thanks to everyone that donated, which helped us crush our goal for Imerman. Their slogan is, “so no one faces cancer alone.” This weekend is sure going to hit us hard in ALL the feels.