Having a Child With Down Syndrome, Part XXV: Commitments

Copyright © 2012 Stephen Hawley, all rights reserved.

When I was in college, there was a point where I walked upstairs in the library and found myself winded when I reached the top.  Not good.  So the next semester, I added a PE class in running to my course load.  I liked it a lot and I’ve kept at it on-again-off-again over the years.  When I take up an exercise program, it’s almost always running.  This is especially funny since I’m not a particularly good runner.  Last year, after another patch of crazy life, I took it up again and followed the Couch to 5K program.  I succeeded in it and kept at running until I had some health problems that tanked my stamina and made it impossible to run.

Three weeks ago, I started up again, but not with Couch to 5K program – I’m using a self-paced program to get myself into a much longer range, because I decided to run the Falmouth Road Race in August.  This is a highly competitive 7 mile race and one that attracts scores of elite runners.  I am not one of those; at least not in the usual sense of the word.  As a member of the Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress, I have received scores of mailings about the race.  The MDSC gets a small number of race slots for the purpose of fund-raising and this year, I grabbed one of those slots.  In the sense that this is a small, privileged group, I am elite.

I am committed to this race and committed to helping raise money for the MDSC, much in the same way that I’m committed to helping my daughter grow up to be the best person she can be.  The MDSC has been instrumental in providing families with support, information, and resources about Down syndrome to make my commitments easier.  I have such gratitude for the organization and its help, I feel it fitting that I should give back.

My running goal? To finish.  Ideally, I’d like to finish in a pokey 70 minutes.  I think I can do it.  So far, I’m using 8.5 minutes/mile on my “fast” days and 10 minutes/mile on my “long” days.

My donation page is here.  I have set a basic goal of $1000, but I would like to go way past that.  I had intended to promise to match every donation up to $300, but an anonymous donor has already put in more than that!  I still will, but please consider donating.  It’s tax-deductible and it’s a worthy commitment.  Please help.

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