Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Medals 4 Mettle


Yesterday, I had a unique opportunity to directly see the impact that the Medals 4 Mettle organization has on it's recipients. For those of you unfamiliar with the charity read below:

Via the Medals4Mettle website:

" In 2005, Medals4Mettle was started as a result of marathoner runners who award their finisher's medals to others who have demonstrated similar mettle, or courage. Certainly everyone cannot run a marathon, but people who are battle life-threatening illnesses and severe disabilities demonstrate mettle everyday. Marathon runners experience the cheers and support from total strangers as they run through the streets, and these same runners cheer wheelchair competitors that they may pass on the course. Medals4Mettle celebrates our collective human courage, and our innate desire to reward and support each other as we all face life's challenges."


Let's back up for a second though. About a year ago, I ran across the M4M charity via the Internet and saw that there was a Detroit chapter. My medals were just hanging there in my man cave/running room collecting dust and really served no other purpose to me than to avoid hitting them as I rummaged through for gear. Now, of course if you had asked me 5 years ago to donate my race medals, I would have told you no way! I ran "X" race, I earned that medal. Call it the preciousness of youth or simply immaturity, but I didn't see the value in donating something I felt I had earned. Forward motion and reflection left me lots of time to think about what it all means in terms of my running, those medals, etc. I will always have those memories and no longer saw any need to keep those medals. Pass it on, and let someone who is really running a much more difficult race be recognized for their efforts.

For an episode of the podcast last year, I was able to sit down with the Detroit chapter president , Joe Burns and donated all of my marathon and ultra race medals at the time. I have continued throughout the year to plug the charity and through the podcast, I have received medals from fellow runners from all across the country including one guy who was able to collect over 200 medals from a race that I have passed on to Joe. Last summer, Joe invited me and a few others to Children's Hospital in Detroit, where we met a representative and donated some medals that would then be passed out to the children. While, I was truly inspired by that opportunity to talk up the charity, yesterday's opportunity left no doubt in my mind that every runner/cyclist/triathlete who has participated in an endurance event should donate to this charity at least one medal.

University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital yesterday provided me and several others, the opportunity to meet and present children who are participating in their own endurance event that none of them chose with some medals. These children and their parents did not choose their event. They did not choose to have a closed head injury, or seizures, or compressed vertebrae, or burns, or have their twin brother not make it through the birth process. However, in every one of those kids eyes, I saw mettle, I saw courage, and I saw an indomitable spirit that said, they are going to persevere. They were going to keep moving forward.

I hope the small token acknowledging their efforts brought a smile to their face and a reminder that they are too endurance athletes in their own right. After yesterday, I have no reason, to complain or mire in the choices I make regarding signing up for an endurance event or an injury I might incur as a result. I made that choice, these children did not.

23 comments:

Kevin Green said...

Amen to that!

Kovas Palubinskas said...

I've read about this group - what an awesome thing they are doing! Thanks for sharing their website and your thoughts.

張孟勳 said...

你不能左右天氣,但你可以改變心情..................................................

juliancu said...

君子立恆志,小人恆立志。..................................................

萱祥 said...

向著星球長驅直進的人,反比踟躕在峽路上的人,更容易達到目的。..................................................................

韻枝 said...

Never put off till tomorrow what may be done today.................................................................

Kath黃rinA俊宇 said...

人間好話,要如海綿遇水牢牢吸住..................................................................

家瑋 said...

來問個安,誰不支持這個部落格,我咬他. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

asda said...

這麼好的部落格,以後看不到怎麼辦啊!!......................................................................

志宏 said...

與人相處不妨多用眼睛說話,多用嘴巴思考,....................................................................

葉婷 said...

河水永遠是相同的,可是每一剎那又都是新的。......................................................................

林志宏 said...

一個人的價值,應該看他貢獻了什麼,而不是他取得了什麼.................................................................

許紀廷 said...

變天了~~注意身體,別感冒囉!.................................................................                           

偉倫 said...

知識可以傳授,智慧卻不行。每個人必須成為他自己。....................................................................

立偉立偉 said...

生存乃是不斷地在內心與靈魂交戰;寫作是坐著審判自己。.................................................................

麗珠麗珠 said...

成熟,就是有能力適應生活中的模糊。.................................................................

于庭 said...

所有的資產,在不被諒解時,都成了負債............................................................

李志吉 said...

人有兩眼一舌,是為了觀察倍於說話的緣故。............................................................

joven said...

beautiful blog..pls visit mine and be a follower.. thanks and God bless..

http://forlots.blogspot.com/

joven said...

beautiful blog..pls visit mine and be a follower.. thanks and God bless..

http://forlots.blogspot.com/

joven said...

beautiful blog..pls visit mine to,and be a follower..thanks and God bless..http://forlots.blogspot.com/

毓er曹妃sf炳hd張jtr珠 said...

走過路過~不能錯過~哈哈............................................................

佐蓁 said...

有用的才華若不用,便如同日晷儀放在陰暗之中............................................................