Saturday, April 16, 2011

Tomorrow is the Big Day (London Marathon 2011 in 12 hours 30 minutes)

Hi All,

My last blog before the big race. I wanted to take a moment to catch people up.

First and foremost has been my goal to raise money for The Children’s Trust ( Without the Trust, I wouldn't be running the London Marathon. The Trust also provides families with an incredible amount of support and children with brain injuries & disabilities with the care they need to recover. I mentioned in my previous email and many of you may already know this about me but when I was eight years old I suffered a traumatic brain injury. Initially my physicians and therapist put a lot of limitations on what they thought I would or would not be able to do. Everything from speech problems, recovery of short term memory loss, behavoural issues, learning capabilities and motor skills.

With a lot of help, I corrected most of the speech problems...I'm still told ocassionally (by my wife) that I mumble but it has come a long ways. I now work for a company where presenting to clients has become an important part of my role. I bet my speech therapist would be proud.

It is hard to explain how bad my short term memory loss was but I had episodes in school where a half hour to hour long chunks of my day would disappear like they never happened. To me, it seemed as if time had fast forwarded. I spent a lot of time at the The Children's Hospital in Tulsa working with different doctors trying to peice it all back together.

The behavoural issues were a result of emotional highs and lows. I don't know how to explain it in technical terms but essentially moods swings. Seems funny to say and I probably still get accused of it now. The truth is the emotional imbalance was a serious problem and even as my wife or friends may on the occasion joke about it - I have learned to cope with it. Much like the rest of my recovery, it was in large part a result of over a year with visits to The Children's Hospital seeing a pyscologist and trips to the neurologist.

To help with motor skills, I went frequently to a physical therapist. I think those were my favorite visits, we were always doing something fun. By having those resources available to me, I was able to play sports and do lot of other things throughout my childhood, college years and even now that I may have not been able to do otherwise.

It was also decided for me to be entered into an Improvised Education Plan or IEP. I continued on this program until I started seventh grade. I went on to have a very normal high school and college experiences but getting there required a lot of help and support from a lot of people.

Maybe you can see a recurring theme in my story. Lots of kids and their families need help, just like I did. I am very privileged to be where I am in life and owe thanks to so many for the opportunities I've been afforded.

So please, help me and show your support by making a donation to the The Children's Trust in my name. No donations are too small.

Thanks to many of you, I've already raised 749 GBP.

On to running.

Since I first started running with goal of a marathon in mind, I've run 731 miles. I've run 404 miles just since the beginning of the year.

I've learned a ton and broken down a lot of mental and physical barriers. I've been amazed at the progress from day one to now. In the beginning, I had a hard time conceptualizing how difficult it would be to complete a marathon much less setting a goal for finishing in under 4hrs.

Tomorrow all that hard work and effort will finally pay off. I will start the race as 1 out of 37,000 people leading out of the corrals from Greenwich Park; however, as I run past Buckingham Palace and through the finish I will join a very small group people. Sources vary on this but it seems consistent that far less than 1% of the world's population have completed a marathon, roughly .1%. That is exciting and truly reinforces my belief that we are all more capable than we lead ourselves to believe.

Thanks for all the well-wishes and support. Jeremiah.

1 comment:

  1. This is so inspiring, Jeremiah. You're doing amazing things! Good luck tomorrow!