BENEFITING: Ovarian Cancer Research Fund
ORGANIZER: THE IRONMAN FOUNDATION
EVENT: YOUR JOURNEY, YOUR CAUSE
Ironman & Ovarian Cancer Fundraiser take two..........I chose the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund again in honor of my sister and her winning battle against the disease. We all hear plenty about Breast Cancer but not as much as we should about Ovarian Cancer. I want to help change awareness on Ovarian Cancer as it is the silent cancer and hard to detect it.
I've started it by making a $500 donation and Pulte Mortgage who I work for matches my donation so we have already raised $1,000.
My journey to help find a cure and raise funds for research started when my sister was diagnosed for the second time in March 2013. During 2013, I had just started doing triathlons and decided I loved them so much I wanted to go big or go home so I signed up for my first Ironman in 2014 and knew they did fundraising so it was a win-win. I got to become an Ironman, with only 35 seconds to spare thanks to wonderful Ironman Guardian Angel named Nikki Ward, and raised over $13,000. Really hoping I finish in under 15 hours in 2015 versus trying to use all 17 hours.......Although I wouldn't trade the race I had in 2014 for the world as it for sure and always will be an experience of a lifetime getting the midnight finishers chute experience plus I was able to locate my very special angel after the race so I have an amazing story to go with my first Ironman. I was very happy that both my sister and mom were at my race in person to cheer me on all the way up until 11:45PM when I finally crossed the finish line and heard Mike Reilly say "Jamie Twedt, you are an Ironman" I savored my medal for about 10-15 minutes and placed it around my sisters neck as she is the one winning the biggest race in life with kicking cancers butt!!!!!
I don't claim to always understand life but getting cancer once is enough and it is tough watching her having to fight it all over again. It took them a very long time to discover she had Ovarian Cancer the first time in January 2011. She had not felt well for some time but they couldn't figure out why. It was finally discovered when they had to do emergency surgery on her as the tumor was causing blockage to her colon and her colon burst. The 6 months leading up to that she had a backache that she couldn't get rid of with massages or going to the chiropractor. The month she had her emergency surgery she thought she had a bad case of flu that she couldn't shake.
So without her colon bursting who knows how much longer it would have been before the Ovarian Cancer was discovered. Like they say, Ovarian Cancer is the silent cancer, you have to listen to your body.
My second Ironman race is also dedicated to my sister who will receive my medals again this year for both my half Ironman and full Ironman to go with the 2014 medals that she already has. She is my hero for not only winning the battle but for how she handles it with such a positive attitude. She is my daily inspiration and when I'm having tough training days all I need to do is think about Dawn. She can't stop her battle so I can't stop when I'm having a bad or tough training day.
I of course would love to raise as much money as I did with my 2014 Ironman Boulder fundraiser to help find a cure. Please help me reach my goal and thank you in advance for your donation.
I also ask that everyone take time and educate yourself not only about Ovarian Cancer but your family history. Like my sister says "Knowledge is Power" It took me a long time to get my head wrapped around that as my family has a history of both breast and ovarian cancer. Both my mother and sister tested positive for the BRCA1 gene shortly after my sister got diagnosed in 2011. They asked me so many times to take my test but it took me watching my sister start her fight again in for the second time to finally take the test. I also carry the BRCA1 mutated cancer gene. I have used and am using that knowledge to my advantage. In January of 2014 I had a full hysterectomy to greatly reduce my chances of getting Ovarian Cancer. In November, I will have a double mastectomy and next year complete the reconstruction surgery. This will also greatly reduce my odds of getting Breast Cancer. Since I carry the gene my boys also have a 50/50 chance that I've passed this gene to them. I hope to get them to also take the genetic testing to see if they carry the BRCA1 gene so the have the knowledge.
If I can help one person understand the importance of taking the genetic testing I will have accomplished my mission. I was lucky enough last year to have influenced at last 3 women that I'm aware of to take the test. My insurance is wonderful, with completing the test and knowing I carry the gene, it covers my surgeries. I of course can't say if everyones insurance would do this but that made it a no brainer for me to plan all of my proactive surgeries.
Before you go, the below are some signs of Ovarian Cancer:
Please learn the signs which are:
2) Pelvic or abdominal Pain
3) Trouble eating or feeling full quickly
4) Urgent or frequent urination