Before I get to the heart of my post, I would like to make sure that I have adequately acknowledged the sacrifices that our service men and women have made and continue to make for our country — and give appropriate respect to the families who support them. I am grateful beyond my powers of expression for those who gave their lives protecting mine.
Even though I will never face combat, even though I have never worn a military uniform, I believe that I am a patriot and that patriotism goes beyond military service. I believe that patriotism is more than a feeling — even though respect for our country, its ideals, and those who make greater sacrifices and contributions that I do is a big part of being a patriot. I believe that people are what they do more than what they say.
My sense of patriotism is why I’ll often pick up trash that I didn’t drop on the ground. My sense of patriotism is why I have spent the last 10-15 years growing and then donating my hair to Locks of Love. My sense of patriotism was part of my motivation to become a teacher. I believe it is my duty and privilege to give back in any way that I can.
Giving back is why I took a leap of faith about a month ago. I had been battling hamstring issues off and on for almost a year, but all I could think about was what I had heard friends say about the St. Jude marathon and what it felt like to run through the St. Jude campus. The race made my bucket list. My leap of faith has two parts:
- That I will overcome my injuries, train smart, and be ready to run and complete the race by this December.
- That I can raise a modest amount to give back to St. Jude. I know at least a dozen families who have a member who is alive today because of St. Jude’s commitment to providing treatment regardless of ability to pay. In their own way, each family is making quiet contributions to America.
I would like to give you the opportunity to give back, as well. My husband, a good friend, and I have each committed to raising money for St. Jude. Would you click through and help one of us out?
Elizabeth: I am not quite halfway to my goal. I would love to go far beyond what I pledged.
John: His race and goal are more modest than mine, and when I checked before writing this post he was about 70% of the way there.
Madeleine: She made the most ambitious goal of the three of us, and she is the furthest from reaching it. I would be honored if you would give her a hand in reaching her goal.