Katy Murray via Crowdrise
February 27, 2015
BENEFITING: National Kidney Foundation, Inc.
In lieu of a kidney, this fundraiser is my way of honoring my dad and letting him know that his life matters. Through this fundraiser, his struggles with chronic kidney disease might someday have a much larger impact for others struggling to survive.
The National Kidney Foundation is the leading organization in the U.S. dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease for hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals, millions of patients and their families, and tens of millions of Americans at risk.
My fundraising campaign runs from January 26, 2015 (my dad's birthday) through October 15, 2015 (my birthday). Between these dates, I will be highlighting several endurance races to help raise money and awareness for the National Kidney Foundation.
In the process of setting up this fundraiser, I discovered some interesting details about these two dates (1/26/15 and 10/15/15).
There are exactly 262 days between our birthdays. (A marathon, which is one of my endurance events, is 26.2 miles long)
I was born the year my dad turned 35; I will be turning 35 this year.
There are 8 months & 19 days between our birthdays (I was about 2 weeks early); I'll let you figure that one out on your own.
More than 26 million adults are living with chronic kidney disease in the US (the fundraiser begins on the 26th; over the course of the 262 days I will be raciing at least one 26.2 mile race) - there's something about that number 26!
My dad first ran into trouble with his kidneys after a near-death experience when a gallstone completely impacted his intestines. A week passed without the ability to hold food down, and by the time he sought medical attention, his kidneys had shut down.
His kidneys hung on for another 8 years before function dropped below the critical point, at which time he began dialysis.
The weekend after Thanksgiving, he had another near-death experience, followed by a 2-week stay in the hospital, and a week in a rehab center.
I don't know how much time I have left with my dad. That's the fragility of life we all face. Some go without warning, others fight for their lives for years. I see the struggle and I see how much kidney disease has changed my dad. It has taken his independence, his resiliency, and much of his health. But it somehow has not taken his spirit.
This fundraising event will not impact him financially, but a greater cause — an organization that has a much bigger reach. My hope is that one day we can confidently say that put our efforts in the right place; toward awareness, prevention and treatment. So that life can be lived, rather than survived.
Your contribution means a lot to me.