As many of you know, last summer I ran a half marathon! I had wanted to run a half for several years but kept making excuses. I kept telling myself that I couldn’t or that I didn’t have enough time. Then, I was introduced to Imerman Angels.
Imerman Angels (IA) carefully matches and individually pairs a person touched by cancer (usually someone currently battling cancer) with someone who has fought and survived the same type of cancer (a Mentor Angel). Cancer caregivers (spouses, parents, children, and other family and friends of fighters) also receive one-on-one connections with other caregivers and survivors. These one-on-one relationships inspire hope and offer a chance to ask personal questions and receive support from someone who is uniquely familiar with the experience. The service is absolutely free and helps anyone touched by any type of cancer, at any cancer stage, at any age, living anywhere in the world.
I became involved with IA through my friend Khit. Khit ran away from home at the age of 16 to avoid an arranged marriage and has been on her own ever since. While on her own, she has fought cancer twice. The first time, she was completely alone, without any family to turn to for support. Team IA really helped her through her fight and now she is a mentor herself, an athlete, and also works for IA part-time.
Khit’s story made me think about my Aunt Karen and how her caregiver and mentor really helped her and my family toward the end of her fight. Her mentor helped her to acknowledge her disease, helped her to cope with it, and was there for her whenever needed.
I currently work in oncology research and see the adversities that cancer patients go through on a daily basis. Being aware of such adversities and knowing how much of a positive impact a mentor can have on a cancer patient and his or her family is what finally got me out the door to train for my half marathon. All of the sudden, time, pain, and fatigue meant nothing as I was introduced to running for a purpose far greater than my own personal satisfaction. I was running so that no one had to face cancer alone.
One of my Aunt's favorite quotes was “To the world you may be one person but to one person you may be the world.” Her caregiver/mentor meant the world to her and our family. Please help me (and help IA) continue to make these kinds of connections possible by donating to Imerman Angels. Help IA ensure that no one will have to face cancer without the support of someone who truly understands.
Thank you sincerely,
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