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Stefanie Acierno's Fundraiser:

Boston Medical Center Boston 2017

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BENEFITING: Boston Medical Center

ORGANIZER: Boston Medical Center

EVENT: 2017 Boston Marathon

EVENT DATE: Apr 17, 2017

Stefanie Acierno

THE STORY:

This is probably the longest writing I’ve put down on paper since graduate school, however I have so much to say and can’t think of any time better than now to put my thoughts down on paper.  I’ve been joking with many of my friends that I feel like Jerry McGuire when he wrote his mission statement; as he would eventually call it.

As probably everyone in my life knows (and if you don’t, you’re living under a rock), I’ve dedicated myself to training for the Boston Marathon this year.  I might’ve become that annoying person who can’t and won’t stop talking about it, but as you continue reading you’ll see that it’s something I’m very passionate about and for good reason.

I recently learned the story of how the marathon got started.  The marathon race was created in 1896 to honor the mythical run of Greek messenger Pheidippides from Marathon to Athens.  In 490 BC, the Athenian army defeated the invading Persian army in a battle in the plain of Marathon, which is located roughly 26 miles north of Athens.  The Athenians then ordered the messenger to run ahead to Athens and announce the victory to the city.  Upon reaching the Athenian agora, he exclaimed “Nike!” (or “we conquer”) and then collapsed dead from exhaustion.  After learning about this myth, it occurred to me…the marathon is about a message; so that is why I’ve decided to share mine.

Let’s also take a minute to remember poor Pheidippides…talk about commitment…

It began back in November when the BMC Development Team asked me to run as a team member.  I started the BMC Philanthropy Committee a few years ago, and because of this, they thought I’d be a great member of the team to raise money for the hospital.  My initial reaction:  Absolutely not.  I was more than happy to go out and raise money, but wasn’t running 26.2 miles.  The most exercise I’ve done recently was getting off the couch to greet the Foodler guy with my delivery.  This is no exaggeration.  As one of my friends jokingly (yet seriously) pointed out, “there might have been a time in your life when you were athletically inclined, but that time has passed.”  In my mind, I agreed with him.  There was no way I’d be doing this.  Unless playing Candy Crush was part of the training routine, I wouldn’t know how to train, nor would I have the time.

And there you have it.  My Boston Marathon story.  I believed I couldn’t, so I wouldn’t.

But wait.

I was recently reminded that this year marks my 15th (yes, 15th) year as a member of the social work team at BMC.  I can still vividly remember losing my first patient.  A young teenager who’d gotten into a fight that cost their life.  I remember the mother’s tears, pain in her eyes, screaming in the waiting room.  I remember my own feelings of not sure how to comfort her in this time of absolute heartache and grief.  I thought of another patient, in and out of the hospital suffering from addiction.  I asked him, “what can I do to help you” and his response has lingered with me always… “You can’t help me, I can’t even help myself.  Do you want to know how I learned how to use heroin?  When I was 8, I needed to inject my mom just so she would get up to make me breakfast and take me to school”.  I think of that young man often and hope he found his way.  These patients made me a better social worker and a better person.  A person who tries not to judge.  A person who realizes everyone is fighting a battle or struggling in some way.

That’s when it hit me.  What a hypocrite I’ve been.  To work 15 years telling people that they can do anything that they put their mind to, that change is around the corner if you believe it.  I’ve spent 15 years believing in others, yet I didn’t believe in me.  How did this happen?  Where did I get lost along the way?  If I don’t believe in myself, I’m the one missing out on life!

And there it begins.  The change around the corner.  Still not knowing what this meant or what I needed to do…just run, I guess?  My dad would always say, “if you are going to do something, do it 100% or don’t do it at all”.  I respect those words, and have taken them literally in all aspects of my life...because even when I’ve messed up, I’ve messed up 100%!  So here it goes.  January 1st would be the first real committed training day.

January 1st I set out to run.  The struggle was real!  The cold in my face, the pit in my stomach.  I didn’t make it very far.  Discouraged and feeling hopeless, I walked home.  What in God’s name did I commit to do?  Why did I say I’d do this?  What on Earth made me believe you could possibly do this?  The next day I got up, still feeling hopeless, but went out and ran.  I started thinking of those that knew I was training for this.  Those who laughed with me, those who laughed at me, and those who laughed behind my back.  All those people in some way or another were pushing me to run.  Here was my initial motivation.

These days I don’t have much free time.  Working, training, planning fundraisers.  The long runs have given me plenty of time to think.  This training is hard work…but is it really?  I’m fortunate to have the physical ability to run, financial means to buy what I need to do so, a home and comfortable bed to rest in, friends and family to lean on when I’m emotionally drained.  There are so many more difficult struggles in life.  When I’m running, I think of those who struggle daily.  The depressed person who debates taking their own life, the homeless man on the corner longing for food and a warm place to lay his head, a parent or sibling about to lose a loved one to a disease, those struggling with addiction.  Now that’s hard work.  And that has become my main motivation.

What started off as an idea that I could be an inspiration has led me to believe that everyone I know and even those I don’t know…  That is MY inspiration.  SO I run, every step, every foot I put forward and every time I might step back…I will push myself for them.  I RUN BECAUSE…OF YOU!  I’ve decided to write names on my running gear that I’ll be wearing for the marathon.  I want to run for you, for your loved ones, for those who have passed, and for those who may have lost hope and are struggling.  If you feel inspired in any way and would like to come along on my journey, send me their name to put on my gear.  When I cross that finish line on April 17th, I will exclaim NIKE! Not just for me, but for all of us!

Thank you for reading..Thank you for your love and support!

#TeamBMC #BMCstrong #WeAreBMC

Follow Us on instagram @SWphilanthropyBMC

Facebook: BMC Social Work Department Philanthropy Committee

Sincerely, 

Stefanie 

DONATE

To This Fundraiser

$16,850

MONEY RAISED
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  • Sophia Pattas

    $26

  • Joe O'Brien

    $500

  • Anonymous

    $50

  • Leane Manderson

    $25

  • Lew Jaffe

     

  • Erica & Alyssa Criscuolo

     

  • Jacqueline Spry

    $20

  • Matt Sfara

    $100

  • Justin Cecil

    $50

  • Gil

     

  • Amanda Mattuchio

    $20

  • Judy Wilson

    $25

  • Joe OBrien

    $30

  • Melissa Byrne

    $20

  • Kerry Salerno

    $50

  • Suzanne dasilva

    $40

  • Scott Reilly

     

  • Joe O

    $30

  • Rob and Emily Menzel

     

  • Ellen Kreida

     

  • Tim Guerena

    $40

  • Don Zollo

    $100

  • Ben Scotto

    $100

  • Tara Boule

    $25

  • Cindy Leary

     

  • Raffaelina Acierno Scavone

    $25

  • Michael Hurley

    $50

  • Mike Nelson

    $26.20

  • Phil Lavoie

    $150

  • Maria Acierno Bolaccio

    $25

  • Lisa Watson

    $50

  • Aimee Fortier

     

  • Mark & Jane Flinn

    $200

  • Anonymous

    $25

  • Alisa Zaref

    $50

  • Cassandra Sillitta

    $100

  • MJ

     

  • nancy gaden

    $100

  • Michelle Syed

    $50

  • Stefanie Acierno

    $1,055

  • Anonymous

    $2,500

  • Anonymous

    $360

  • Theo Hatzipetros

    $50

  • Stefanie acierno

    $50

  • Elizabeth

    $25

  • Salerno Family

     

  • Matching Monday

     

  • Social Work fundraiser

     

  • Karen Costin +Avery Leccese

    $25

  • Maria Champigny

     

  • Barbara Furgal

    $100

  • Michael & Brian

    $100

  • Chris Vinard

    $50

  • Social work team marathon fundraiser

     

  • Deborah Mowers

    $25

  • Grace O'Donnell & Jake Basiliere

    $30

  • Anonymous

    $500

  • Charlotte Osgood

    $25

  • Anonymous

    $50

  • Matching Monday

     

  • Marc Filipiak

    $30

  • Ryan Talbot

    $25

  • Daniel Arevalo

    $25

  • Anonymous

    $160

  • Anonymous

    $40

  • Anonymous

    $160

  • Je Te Magazine

    $100

  • Jazmin, Marcus, & Trey Miller

    $50

  • Anonymous

    $60

  • Marci and Dave Berteletti

     

  • Liz Kerr

     

  • Nico & Bella

    $50

  • Tom Brady

    $12

  • Matching Monday

     

  • Elizabeth Keating

     

  • Cheralyn Froio

    $25

  • Bonnie Chang

     

  • M Clark

    $25

  • Ilan Amar

    $50

  • Matching Monday

     

  • Debbie O Leary

    $50

  • Anonymous

    $100

  • Amanda, John, Maximus & Natalie

    $100

  • Matching Monday

     

  • Melissa

    $50

  • Anonymous

    $25

  • The Sentes Family

    $25

  • Deb Fauci

     

  • amanda wright

    $50

  • Suzanne

    $50

  • Judy Maloney

    $50

  • Patrick Greehan & Annie Normand

    $50

  • GB and Bryony

    $100

  • Cristine Picariello Kardas

    $25

  • Liz Durkin

    $50

  • Anonymous

     

  • James Fauci

    $50

  • Mark Frommelt

    $50

  • Brittany and John

    $100

  • Matching Monday

     

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169% Raised of $10,000 Goal

The Team: $941,625 TOTAL RAISED SO FAR

Fundraiser Title

JPs Team

Amount Raised

$117,180

Fundraiser Title

Boston Medical Center

Amount Raised

$66,767

 

7% Raised of $1,000,000 Goal

Fundraiser Title

Kelli O'Donohue

Amount Raised

$26,433

 

120% Raised of $22,000 Goal

Fundraiser Title

Charlotte Davis

Amount Raised

$23,400

 

130% Raised of $18,000 Goal

Fundraiser Title

Angela O'Connor

Amount Raised

$22,991

 

115% Raised of $20,000 Goal

Fundraiser Title

Lukas Gaffney

Amount Raised

$22,355

 

112% Raised of $20,000 Goal

Fundraiser Title

Christina Quinn

Amount Raised

$20,773

 

208% Raised of $10,000 Goal

Fundraiser Title

Nancy Keener

Amount Raised

$18,847

 

126% Raised of $15,000 Goal

Donor Comments

Matching Monday

Matching Monday

5 months ago

Brittany and John

Brittany and John

DONATION: $100

For Stef who helped put a smile on my face in the darkest of times. 5 months ago

Mark Frommelt

Mark Frommelt

DONATION: $50

Awesome Job Stef. Congrats on the finish!!!! 5 months ago

James Fauci

James Fauci

DONATION: $50

Go Stefanie 5 months ago

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

GO Stef! RUN BMC Paul 5 months ago

Liz Durkin

Liz Durkin

DONATION: $50

5 months ago

Cristine Picariello Kardas

Cristine Picariello Kardas

DONATION: $25

Good luck!! 5 months ago

GB and Bryony

GB and Bryony

DONATION: $100

In memory of Eve Barnes 5 months ago

Patrick Greehan & Annie Normand

Patrick Greehan & Annie Normand

DONATION: $50

5 months ago

Judy Maloney

Judy Maloney

DONATION: $50

5 months ago