Friday, September 23, 2016

Finally...#TeamRMHC and why I'm running the Chicago Marathon

Oh em gee, you guys, this post has been AGES coming. I'll be posting about my trip soon, but I have to get this up because I really should have written it three months ago!! I guess procrastination got the better of me. But here it is! My reason for running the Chicago Marathon and choosing Ronald McDonald House Charities to run for!

This past Sunday morning I woke up at 3:30am and dragged myself out of bed to drive downtown and run 20 miles along the lakefront as part of my training for the Chicago Marathon. You might be questioning my sanity, and perhaps you’re wondering why I did it.

It is because I have learned the following about myself: I will do practically anything for charity.

Even run a marathon.

Why Ronald McDonald House?
I chose RHMC because at 20-weeks pregnant, my high school friend Stephanie found out her daughter Emma would be born with a congenital heart defect. If she lived, Emma would require immediate open heart surgery and additional surgeries over the first months and years of her life. Stephanie and her husband Joe were able to stay at Ronald McDonald House for the first weeks of Emma’s life until she was well enough to come home.

Their story is a happy one. When I met Emma she was five weeks old and could only be fed via feeding tube. She has now had multiple surgeries to help her heart grow and is a healthy, happy toddler with every chance at a normal and healthy life. Stephanie and Joe are very open about what a great help and relief it was to be able to stay close to Emma during those early days, and that palpable sense of relief and gratitude is why I’m running for #TeamRMHC, and why I donated my $185 race fee to the cause.

But a good cause doesn’t always make training easier.

At Mile 16 of my run on Sunday I was hurting, and I started questioning my marathon decision. But then I thought about all of the children born sick like Emma, or who are struggling with cancer and realized: They don’t have a choice. I am choosing to do this because they don’t have a choice. Their families don’t have a choice. And I can face 26.2 miles for them.

So on October 9th I will toe the line of the Chicago Marathon with thousands of other people, and I am running with Emma in mind and in support of Ronald McDonald House Charities as part of #TeamRMHC.

About RMHC
Ronald McDonald House Charities provide a “home-away-from-home” for families so they can stay close by their hospitalized child at little to no cost. The principle is simple: The most important thing a family should focus on when a child is sick is the health of that child. Is should not be where they will spend the night or eat their next meal or where they can afford to stay. In times of crisis, when a child needs the best care and support possible, families need to be together.

It might be for one night, it might be for months – Ronald McDonald House Charities provide this peace of mind for more than 7 million families each year. And each year, TeamRMHC raises more than 1 million dollars each year to support the charity.

If you would like to support myself and TeamRMHC as we run, you can donate to my fundraising page.

Thank you for your time and consideration, from myself and the RMHC families. Your donation helps keep families close when it matters.

Christina MacKenzie

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