Cancer is such a scary word, no matter how it's spoken.
Peace of mind taken for granted, can be crushed and forever broken.
But together we could fight this!
It's an enemy from within us, striking oh so randomly.
Tomorrow it could be you, for yesterday it was me.
So together we should fight this!
While science is advancing, my heroes still are dying.
Some treatments just aren't working, but still we'll keep on trying.
And together we will fight this!
Research is the magic word, it's what we want to see.
Nothing less than a cancer cure, would mean so much to me.
For together we have fought this!
It'll take support from everyone, to really see this through.
So peace of mind for all of us, can start off fresh and new.
And together we will win!
The cancer experience is different for everyone; I find myself without the ability to use my own words to outwardly connect that part of me, so I borrow them when I need a statement. That's the thing about cancer: even when your body survives, there are other parts of you that don't. I think about my friend, Rick Edwards, a lot. He lost his body and his life, but his words and legacy endure through the numerous lives impacted by his considerable influence as a teacher, coach, and husband and father. Rick was a dominant figure in the Michigan swimming community for a long time, and a brilliant writer. He wouldn't like the poem I shared. He would tell me to sit with it and write something of my own and probably insult my bravery with some measure of profanity (and humor). Maybe some day I'll be able to do that, but for now, Rick: this swim is for you. It won't be good enough, but it holds all the promise of a beginning.
I'm not in this alone: my pal, Erin, and I are dusting off the skill sets of our youth to support our cancer research community in a different way than we do every day. This swim will always be near and dear to my heart as a swimmer and a patient, and now there's a new level of gratification to do this as a University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center employee (your donation does NOT go to my paycheck!) Please check out the text provided by SAA below, and feel free to reach out to me with questions (and encouragement; it's hard to get back in the water after being out so long!):
In our lifetime, 1 in 2 men and 1 in 3 women will be diagnosed with cancer. I joined the SAA community so that, together, we can change that. I am challenging myself by swimming in the SAA - Motor City Mile and raising as much money to fight cancer as I can. Please support me by sponsoring my swim and making a gift. The money you give will go towards cancer research, prevention and treatment and will make an impact in the fight to find a cure. Thank you for your generosity and may it lead to a cancer-free world!
Swim Across America, 11600 N. Community House Rd., Suite 100, Charlotte, NC 28277. Check should be made out to Swim Across America but please include a note mentioning my name as the swimmer you are supporting!