(written by Terry Abrams)
So one day it dawns on you that your close family and friends don't even flinch when you calmly announce one day out of the blue that you will running from your front porch in Washington to the top of Mt. Whitney, in California.
No one says, "What!? Are you crazy??" "How freaking far is that? Are you going to be doing the whole distance on foot??" No. Instead, it's "when are you planning on doing this? Can I help you train? How are your feet doing?" And so on.
No one mentions that I'm 61 or that it's 1000 freaking miles. None of this happens because my reputation for doing HEART OVER SANITY adventures precedes me.
So what are all the reasons for such a crazy attempt at something, that even for me stretches the limits of logic, passion and fear? As I mentioned earlier, I will be turning the big 6-1 this year and how better to celebrate that than to top off a long, slow, crazy running career with one final dumb ass move.
I started running when I was 19 back in the good ol' seventies, mainly out of boredom and an intense desire for cookies. I never won a damn race, but soon realized I might not be fast but I could hang in there a real long time, especially if the reasons were for something other than myself.
And this time it's a BIG reason.
Alzheimer's. A disease that hits home and is extremely close to my heart. Yep, that nasty little disease that rips apart families. The long, slow death, the gradual loss of a person's being, their connections to the present and most painful of all, their loved ones.
Sadly, there is no cure, no way out, no chemo, no surgery, nothing. Just a gradual loss of memories, a body still living and breathing but dying all the same.
I've suddenly over the last few years become a victim of this disease, not as in I, myself having Alzehimer's, but as the family member left helpless and tortured with the realization that I will soon be forgotten, along with all the love and memories that a lifetime shared brings with it.
I'm running to fight back.
1000 long, slow, painful miles to raise awareness for Alzheimer's research and funds for Hilarity for Charity and help find an end to this destructive disease.
We'll be updating the blog as we gear up for the big day, so stay tuned!