On November 26, 2014, I lost the most important person in my life. My mom, Janet, died due to complications with Multiple Myeloma and my life was changed forever.
She was an amazing person, kind-hearted and gracious in all she did, and she did not deserve the disease-ridden hand that was dealt to her. She handled each diagnosis she received with a strength that was unmatched by the rest of us and she took on her fate the way she wanted to. When she died she didn't want anyone to worry about her, didn't want anyone to give up their every day lives to be there with her, and didn't want to put a burden on anyone. That was my mom, selfless until the very end. Unfortunately, that meant that I was not able to say goodbye. I was not able to tell her how much she meant to me, and I was not able to tell her just how much I loved her. The pain I've felt from her sudden death has been overwhelming and at times debilitating over the last 5 years.
Which brings me to why I have this page in the first place. In memory of my mother, in honor of the 5-year anniversary of her passing, and in acknowledgement of what would've been her 71st birthday, I will be trekking through the Patagonia region of Argentina & Chile to raise funds and awareness for Multiple Myeloma, the incurable cancer of the blood plasma that my mother had. Backed by the support of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF), I will be with a group of 14 hikers trekking for 8 days in November in the Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma (MM4MM) program, enduring challenging hikes through different areas of Patagonia and reveling in the splendor of this earth, an earth that lost an amazing mother way too soon.
It has taken me years to properly honor my mom and all she did for me and I am extremely humbled to be able to go on this journey for her. The last 5 years have seen some incredible highs for me but also some awful lows, and it pains me every day that I haven't been able to experience any of those with her. I believe this will be an amazing way to honor her memory and to make sure that her legacy lives on.
Any support that you can give for my journey will be greatly appreciated. 100% of all money (yes, 100%) goes directly to research. More importantly, patients need these funds to extend their lives while we get closer and closer to a cure. This is an incredible cause and I am grateful to be a part of it. It's been a long road and I am honored to be able to do this for my mom. I miss her every single day.
To date MM4MM has raised over $2 million with patients, caregivers, family members, doctors, clinicians and others taking on epic challenges and reaching out to their circle of support.
Multiple myeloma is the second most common form of blood cancer. Over 30,000 people are diagnosed yearly with multiple myeloma and an estimated 12,000 are predicted to die each year from the disease.
I'm proud to be part of the ACTION that is helping fund and fuel important research: Thanks to the important work of the MMRF and our partners, the FDA has approved TEN new treatments in the time that it usually takes for ONE new drug to come to market. There are more treatment options in the pipeline. This is so important because myeloma is a cunning disease which morphs through treatment, meaning patients often need new treatment options when they relapse.
The MMRF is one of the most highly regarded cancer foundations in the world. Nearly 90% of the total MMRF budget goes directly towards research and related programming. The MMRF is in the top 1% of all charities, having earned Charity Navigator’s 4-star rating for 16 years.
Please contribute whatever you can. Every little bit really does help.
Thank you so much for your support. It means the world to me.
Cheers to keeping Janet's memory alive,
**Want to double your impact - inquire if your company matches your charitable donations and submit your donation information through your company's portal or HR to receive a match! Forward me your confirmation email and I can get your match added to my fundraising total!