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Mimi’s miles to Ironman

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 7, 2014 by runmyssierun

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September of 2011, Sissy lay in her bed at MD Anderson’s leukemia floor unable to feed herself while my mother was a few floors down having nine tumors removed from her brain via gamma ray surgery. She looked me over and said, “You’re gaining a lot of weight with all this pressure on you taking care of us. Why don’t you take up running?”

“Why couldn’t you have suggested zumba?” I joked back to her.

“I’m serious,” she said. “I want you to run for me.”

My baby brother had died in April, 2011. Sissy died two weeks after the above conversation. Momma died on Easter Sunday April, 2012, exactly one year after my baby brother.

Two weeks after her death, I bought my first pair of running shoes from Valley Running Company. It took a month to build up to running my very first mile… ever… EVER… in my life. One month later, December 2011, I ran my first 5k at the Fiesta Marathon.January 2012, I ran my first 10k over the Causeway at South Padre Island. February 2012, I ran my first half marathon in Austin, the LiveSTRONG Marathon. June 2012, I ran my first full marathon at the Rock N Roll San Diego in California. I went on to run a half marathon every month after that including the San Antonio RnR Marathon and the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco and that December returned to my first race, the Fiesta Marathon and ran the full 26.2 miles as my Team in Training teammates and countless other supporters all ran me in to the finish line even though I injured myself severely during the race. I blogged candidlyabout my entire journey, the good the bad and the ugly on RunMyssieRun.com.

January of 2013, I began a new challenge for Team in Training. I learned how to swim and began riding a bike. I hadn’t done that since I was 12 years old. Ten weeks after I learned to swim, I completed my first triathlon, Stanley’s Triathlon. I then joined the San Antonio TNT Team and completely my first Sprint triathlon for LLS at the Capital of Texas Triathlon in Austin, Texas. Four months after that, I earned the very first Triple Crown for the South Texas Team in Training Team by joining the National Flex TNT Team and completing the 108 mile century ride in the mountains of Nevada at Viva Bike Vegas.

January 2014, I returned to my roots to invigorate energy into the Team by helping launch the first RGV TNT Triathlon Team. I went back to CapTexTri in May of 2014 to push myself up to the Olympic distance… but failed. I was pulled out during the swim and was unable to complete it.  So I found a similar race on the same course and attempted the Olympic Distance Triathlon again knowing that I would not stop until I finished this distance. And I did.

So now what? How do I top that? How do I continue my journey?

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I, the outta shape middle aged princess who had never run a mile before in her life before this, will attept to do her best to complete a Half-Ironman in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, for Sissy, Momma and everyone who questions the possibility of someone who loves her family more than the fear of limitations.

In 2011, I witnessed the pain of multiple human loss.

In 2012, I witnessed the pain of agonizing physical endurance.

In 2013, I witnessed the miracle of healing…multiple times.

In 2014, I witnessed how everything above came together.

In 2015, I hope to witness you experiencing all these miracles with me. I hope to find a cure, eliminate the cause and ensure that those currently “dancing” wth cancer have access to affordable, high quality care.

Now, the above only talks about me and the crazy challenges I’ve done in this short time. What you REALLY need to hear about are the people I’ve met along the way, the victims, the heroes, the parents, the grandparents, the doctors and nurses and pharmacists, the coaches, the teammates, the businesses, the elected leaders, the sponsors, the donors, the people who care just because it’s the right thing to do… this is where the story gets good. And that is my journey… a bunch of good people doing good things all around us in a world filled with chaos, fear and uncertainty. Travel it with me.

It takes more than one person to make up a team and that’s why I’m asking you to donate to my TNT fundraising page for TNT!

By participating as a member of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (LLS) TNT, I am raising funds to help find cures and ensure access to treatments for blood cancer patients.

Your donation will help fund treatments that save lives every day; like immnuotherapies that use a person’s own immune system to kill cancer. You may not know it, but every single donation helps save a life with breakthrough therapies such as these.

Patients need these cures and they need your support.

Please make a donation in support of my efforts with Team In Training and help get us all closer to a world without blood cancers.

This is THE most amount of money I have ever needed to raise. I pray that although I am no professional athlete, a company will understand the seriousness of my commitment and promise to my mother and offer to sponsor me. I am honored that this journey (aka Mimi’s Miles on Facebook) has become an educational resource for the community of people I live in, a source of healing for me (via runmyssierun.com) and a source of empowerment for those seeking a healthier lifestyle.

Join me and my Team and countless people who have been touched by cancer.

RunMyssieRun.com

With all the love in my heart,

Thank you!

Myssie Cardenas-Barajas

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What’s your limit?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 7, 2014 by runmyssierun

For two years I’ve busted my butt pushing my body’s limit and taking it places I’ve never thought possible. I’ve caught myself saying several times that there are no more limits anymore. Nothing is impossible.

Getting healthy —- no limits! I can do this!

Losing weight — no limits! I can do this!

Curing cancer — no limits! I can do this!!

Running 7 marathons — no limits! I can do this!!

Cycling 108 miles up a 5,000 foot mountain — no limits! I can do this!

5 triathlons…wait, but I don’t know how to swim… Who cares! Learn! No limits!!! I can do this!!!!

Ride my bike a couple of miles with Eddie through the streets of my hometown…. Uh yeah… See… I can’t do that. I’m limited. I’m not limited by legal limits because I’m legally allowed to ride my bike in the street but the ignorance, lack of respect and inexperience of automobile drivers limits my ability and now my life longevity.

Seems I got a big wake up call this week.

See, for a while I lived my life without limits. And IT WAS AWESOME!!!!!

But sitting in a courtroom this week gave me all new insights on limits… Legal limits.

All this time I’ve busted through perceived limits and countless finish lines but I see now that there are lines that no human being SHOULD cross. When a child of God, a fellow human being, crosses that line with complete disregard to all moral, ethical and legal limits, it makes me wonder if there is still another path to run (or ride) in front of me.

As I enter for the first time the Capitol of our great nation attempting to convince our elected leaders of necessary change that must take place in order for cancer treatments and possible cure for cancer to be both affordable and accessible, I am reminded of legal limits once again.

I find myself racing along a path with lines that can be pushed one way and limits that restrain in another way and lives at stake all around us.

I sat with women from all over Texas today sharing our stories of cancer. How we’ve all lost children and how we’ve lost jobs and how time had been stolen from our lives because of cancer. Each story was profound and each struggle prolific and each woman still had a smile on her face after sharing it with me… Just like Momma used to do.

And then I met Ethan.. A reality TV star. You would think his celebrity status would diminish the harshness of his struggle, or his professional soccer talent would hinder the brutality of his disease or even think… Nah, he’s too handsome to go through such pain and suffering. But cancer is not prejudice. It picks whoever it wants and it usually picks the good people. It picked his dad. He lost him to cancer when he was just a boy. And cancer picked on him, too… Twice.

Ethan was well known for his long hair but insisted on being in control of his cancer and shaved himself bald. He was still very striking. And then he shared a video diary of himself while on treatment.

He cried while watching himself as if the suffering all came back to him that very instant. He never said it but insinuated that there were moments that he didn’t think he could make it… And moment that he didn’t want to. And then he looked up with years in his eyes as he admitted the reality … “And it can come back again.”

The second time cancer hit him, he said “It hit me in the gut.” He said he had to do something …. SOMETHING. It was his “do something moment”. I know that feeling all too well.

My whole family had been effected by cancer. It will never ever be the same again. I am hit in the gut in a way that you may not understand but I promised y’all is be candid. And just as Ethan was incredible candid with me tonight, I’ll share this tonight with y’all….

I feel guilty. I feel guilty for not being chosen. I feel guilty for being healthy, for taking my health for granted all these years, and for NOT going anything until it was too late to enjoy it with those who are now gone.

There will be lines that can never be crossed. There will be finish lines that I hope will never end for me. Countless I hope! There will be limits that I hope to break and limits that I hope will never ever be touched.

Do you know what your limits are?

Oh Sissy… What a journey you’ve chosen for me!

*ps — I dreamt Donny last night. He was his six year old self sitting with me in front of the tv in the living room in the house on Samano watching Saturday morning cartoons together… As we always did. Can you guess what was on the tv? Can you guess what we were singing? #schoolhouserock #imjustabill

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