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  • Laura Robb

Reset to Succeed.

Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. – Henry Ford

Surely you all recall the excitement that I shared earlier last week on Facebook about being chosen to be the AIMS charity runner for the 2019 London Marathon. My husband and I quickly made our flight and lodging arrangements. I started this blog and drafted my first post. I agonized over every word, wanting it to be perfect. My goal was to have the draft ready to publish the moment that I received the fundraising link from AIMS. I hoped the blog would assist in raising HSCT awareness and raise funds for AIMS while having a venue where my journey could be followed.

The AIMS committee and community were cheering me on. My family and friends were calling and texting asking how they could help in my fundraising efforts. It was all amazing, perhaps a tad overwhelming but I promised myself that I would do my best not to fail, not to fall short of my goals. Then a little obstacle was discovered.

We have all experienced an obstacle or a challenge that tried to thwart the plan. I recall a big one in early 2012. My husband and I were returning home from Chicago and we were filled with excitement. Dr. Burt had approved me for HSCT. We spent the flight excitedly chatting about what this meant for our future and how hopeful we were that this would stop my rapidly progressing MS. We discussed the logistics of me being in Chicago for an extended stay while caring for three school aged children but by the time we landed we had formulated a solid plan.

When we landed in Ft. Lauderdale and we turned our phones back on, I noticed that I had missed a call from Chicago. The voicemail was devastating. It was a true gut punch, Dr. Burt had reconsidered. He felt that this treatment could make me worse and he was apprehensive to move forward because of some odd genetic marker. In short, he didn’t want to proceed. The perfect plan that my husband and I had envisioned had just been trampled.

Dr. Burt understood my devastation and ultimately suggested if I could find a specialist to get another opinion on this genetic marker and if this specialist agreed that HSCT wouldn’t make me worse, he might reconsider and he would approve me. There were a lot of ifs and maybes. Not the words I wanted to hear.

My husband is the planner, the fixer. He spends hours planning the perfect trip, researching the best doctors and he has about a 99.999999% perfect record. He found a doctor that specialized in the condition that Dr. Burt was concerned with and the doctor had a recent cancellation so within days we were driving four hours north to get the opinion that Dr. Burt was requesting. As we hoped, the doctor was in favor of HSCT and contacted Dr. Burt immediately. Dr. Burt once again approved me for HSCT. Obstacle averted, plan reset.

So back to that obstacle with the AIMS charity bib for the 2019 London Marathon. Turns out I will not be running the 2019 London Marathon, I will be running the 2020 London Marathon! We have reset our mindset and will be re-booking flights and lodging.

Sometimes a journey feels more like a roller coaster with more loops and dips than ups but if we are willing to reset and overcome the obstacle, the goal can be achieved and may end up better than expected. I was initially disappointed with this obstacle, as I didn’t want to wait a year to raise HSCT awareness or raise funds for AIMS but I now realize that I don’t, we as a community now have more time to do both. I even have some fun runs planned this year to share with you all. So let’s smash the fundraising goal, spread awareness and have fun supporting each other whether you are embarking on your HSCT journey, a veteran of HSCT or a caretaker. 🙂

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