Team Ari

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

I'm not a runner.

But over the last 2+ months, I learned that Matt, Ari, and I surround ourselves with runners.  And these incredible individuals don't just run for exercise. 

Our friends, family, neighbors, sorority sisters, fraternity brothers, camp buddies, and CJP family ran to our side with meals and toys and cards and visits.  And they ran with smiles and encouragement and thoughts and prayers.  Some ran sprints and some long distances.  And they ran as fast as they could to be by us for the most important race ever - the race to save Ari's life.

No ribbon or medal (or thank you note... ahem, I promise they're coming) can thank all of you runners for the outpouring of love and generosity you have already provided us.  Without your support, we wouldn't have made it this far, and we wouldn't have the energy or mind strength necessary to stay up-beat and energetic and committed for the next 2+ years.  This will be one heck of a marathon and when we cross the finish line, we know you will not only be cheering us on, you will still be by our side, holding our hands, lifting us up, and ensuring we win. 

You are all part of our team.  And we are forever grateful.

I'm so very proud to introduce you to a subset of this team - a group of actual runners! 

Meet Team Ari, comprised of 14 incredible friends who are running the B.A.A. half marathon on October 7th to raise money for the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

Emily Beck, Jennifer Cramer, Rachel Glazer, Eli Gurock, Sheri Gurock, Neal Karasic, Adam King, Caryn Lazaroff, Emily Leventhal, Bryanne Mahoney, Leah Ofsevit, Eric Ritvo, Seth Rosenzweig, and Sami Sinclair are not only running for Ari. They are running for every child diagnosed with cancer, every adult fighting day and night to beat the disease, and every family running their own marathon. These friends of ours are training hard and sacrificing their knees and ankles and nipples to raise funds which will help the Dana Farber find a cure for cancer.

For more information on the Dana Farber, click here. This is the story I tell when explaining how lucky we are to be treated at the Dana Farber for the next two years:

A few days after Ari's diagnosis, we asked one of the nurses and then a doctor if we should get a 2nd opinion... just because it's the right thing to do.  Both individuals said the same thing.  They would be happy to give us names of docs around the country, but that people come from around the world to the Dana Farber for their 2nd opinion.  And our head doctor, Lewis Silverman, is the big cheese when it comes to pediatric Leukemia.  He researched and wrote the protocol that kids follow which has significantly increased the remission and cure rates for Ari's specific type of cancer.  He is known world-wide as the man who keeps kids with Leukemia alive.  And all of his work and research has been done through the Dana Farber.

The more funding the Dana Farber has, the more research they can do and the more advancements they can make.  And the more lives they can save.  I thank my lucky stars that we live in Boston and that Ari has Dr. Silverman and the Dana Farber on his team.

And as I've described before, everything at the Dana Farber is fun, is friendly, and is focused on kids and their families.  There are fish tanks, art projects, musicians, toys, games, and an unlimited supply of playdough and bubbles.  There are countless staff members there just to keep the kids happy and engaged.  When we're at the Dana Farber clinic, we feel safe, cared for, and optimistic.  We trust every nurse and every doctor.  We have fun!  It feels like we are with our family.  And it's only been a few weeks.

I learned over the last few months to both ask for and accept help.  So on behalf of the 14 runners, the hundreds of children and thousands of adults currently being treated at the Dana Farber, and of course Ari, I ask for you to join Team Ari as a supporter, a cheerleader, or a friend.  Donate securely online, come out and cheer on October 7th, "Like" us on Facebook, and/or help us spread the word. 

To learn more about the Dana Farber or the team, please check out

You're already a member of Team Goldwasser.  Now join Team Ari.  Thank you for everything.

Go Team!



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