Running Marathons

Last weekend was sister's weekend in Chicago.
Ever since my Mom passed away in 2002, my sister and I have tried to spend a weekend together in Chicago to enjoy one another's company, go to a Cub's game, visit friends and visit Mom's grave.
This year was a little different.  We didn't even plan the weekend around a Cub's game because we had a different goal in mind this year.
Last December one my sister's best friends, Damien, decided he could not stay on this earth any longer.
His decision was devistating for my sister and many others.
My sister and his friends have tried to reach up out of their pit of despair and contribute to the world by raising money to benefit the San Francisco SPCA, one of Damien's favorite charities.
My sister organized a few fund raisers in San Francisco while another friend, Cathy, prepared to run the Chicago Marathon in Damien's memory.  The marathon and an afterparty with a  raffle would be the culminating event for the fund raising with the goal of $10,000 in mind.
I met up with sistah a few days before the race and enjoyed our usual visits with friends and eating of wonderful Chicago food.  The day of the race we dressed warmly for very chilly weather and met up with friends.  Below is a picture of my sister and Pablo Pig waiting for Cathy to reach the 10 mile mark.  Pablo has traveled quite a bit and had some interesting adventures.  He has his own facebook page where he has shared all of his experiences this past year.  As we waited for our runner we cheered on the thousands of runners passing by in hopes of giving encouragement with each high five,"You can Do IT!" and "Good job!"

Cathy looked good at the 10 mile mark. 
She stopped to see her family and then came across to give Renea a hug as well.

We got in the car and drove to the 20 mile mark and waited for Cathy.  There were so many people watching the race and cheering people on.  So much continual applause, and yelling of "Keep going!  You can do it!"  It was inspiring!
The runners faces were tense with concentration but seemed to be soaking in the encouragement.  Occassionally a runner would break into a smile when they heard something they especially liked.  For the crowd there was no competition going on here.  The crowd wanted each individual to succeed!

Sistah ran a short distance with Cathy a couple of times to see how she was doing and give her some extra encouragement. 

After the race we met up at a restaurant/bar and celebrated the end of a great victory for Cathy.
I was amazed at how Cathy could still walk around and visit with everyone after the race.  I think I would have crashed and burned right away but we all have different strengths and it was inspiring to see Cathy's.

At present it looks like my sister and Cathy have raised over $12,000 for the San Francisco SPCA.
An amazing feat all in itself.
Sistah is happy to have the race and fundraising behind her but the real marathon is still going.

She will run this marathon each and every day as she wakes up to Damien's sweet dog, Wesley, 

and as she frequents the city and visits the places they loved to go.
I hope to be there to help cheer her on.
"Keep going!  You can do it!"


Jane Babcock said…
Lisa, you are a good supportive sister.

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