Friday, April 16, 2010

The hardest thing I have ever done.

When I signed up to run with Team Challenge, I was beyond excited to be able to raise money and awareness for a chronic illness while doing something that I am so passionate about. I was incredibly optimistic, ready for the road that lay ahead, confident that my friends and family would want to support me. After-all it has been about five years since I have jumped on the fundraising bandwagon. And this time I wasn't doing it so I could have people to train me, and tell me what to do. I would be running a race in June regardless, but this one meant more, it was special, I was personally tied to the cause.

I had a feeling that just begging and pleading with people to donate would not go over that well. I was in a great city, I had a great network of friends, and I knew they all liked to go out and have a good time. I wanted to plan a bar crawl to get everyone together, raise a bunch of money and have a ton of fun. I thought it would be easy. But typical me, I jumped in way over my head, bit off way more than I could chew and picked the hardest thing on the list with out realizing it. The phone calls alone could have been a second job for me. Let me tell you, trying to make everyone happy is no picnic and even Boyfriend could tell I was getting stressed (and maybe a tad bit bossy...) After two days of non-stop planning and a few minor freak-outs, I had a plan underway. All I had to do now was get people to agree to attend! Piece of cake.

Only it wasn't. It was hard. people were busy, or couldn't commit in the time I needed them to. I slowly grew disappointed, and burnt out from pestering people for answers. I stopped for a few days and although I felt better, I was no closer to a successful event. It was like the second I stopped pushing I stopped seeing results. Sounds a lot like a diet doesn't it? Get lazy and things start to slide? I sent a few follow up emails and messages, and was met with a tiny bit more response but every time I thought I could take a break and rest I needed to keep going. There were many days where I looked forward to a hard tempo run where I could be left alone to just my thoughts. I could set my own terms and worry about pleasing no one except myself. I didn't mind the pain because I knew I was in control.

The more I thought about it I realized fundraising is like running. The lessons you learn are the same, and when you really stop to think about it, both are like life. Sometimes it sucks, and it's really hard, you don't want to keep going but you have to. You have to push and never give up and just keep trying until you reach where it is you want to be. Because when you are standing there, in that moment, when you reach your goal all the hard work is 100% worth it. I am loving every second of being a part of this, enjoying it for all the good it brings to such an important cause. For all the wonderful, friendly, and encouraging people it has brought into my life. It's just another reminder that nothing in life comes easy, and if you're willing to do the work you will get amazing results.

If you or anyone you know would like to donate to the CCFA to help find a cure for Crohn's and colitis, please feel free to visit my fundraising site.

xx Sara

1 comment:

Black Labs and Lilly said...

Fundraising is super super tough. I am still in the middle of mine and am working on creative ideas!

I left you an award today, if you have time please swing by and pick it up, its perfect for those days when you have some bloggers block!!