Today is April 29th. 11 months ago to this day, Jesus took my baby boy into His arms for eternity. 11 months. Seems like so long ago, doesn’t it? 11 months ago, I was broken, depressed, and had more questions in my head than I could recall. I didn’t understand it at the time, but God was using May 29th, 2012 as a turning point in my life.
There are moments in one’s lifetime that are life altering. The obvious ones include getting a license, graduating high school/college, getting engaged, getting married, expecting a child, etc. What you may notice about all those examples is that they are all (seemingly) positive. What about those other life-altering experiences? Bankruptcy, disease, death.
See a while ago, we had a blog. We started it just weeks before Harrison would leave us. It began as a simple outlet to update our family and friends who wanted to keep up with Harrison’s ever changing fight with Trisomy 18. We had no idea God had bigger plans for that blog. As of today, it has been viewed nearly 100,000 times in almost every state, and over 75 countries worldwide.
God graciously gave Emily and I a chance, a chance to turn a negative life-altering experience into something that completely glorifies Him. Those chances come more often than a person might think, but rarely it seems they are utilized to the fullest. Over these last 11 months, we have had a voice, a platform that I have never had before. I have spoken in public before, and anyone who knows me knows that I am not real shy. But this time it was different.
Enter Harrison’s Heroes. In just 1 short month, we will be having our first (of I hope many) races for which the purpose is 2-fold. We are choosing to honor our son’s very short, yet very impactful life by doing something our family loves to do, which is run. We are also hoping that with money raised through this race, we can help out families who go through ordeals such as this. For every pregnancy that goes without any major hitch, there is probably at least 1 that has problems, some of them very severe. Some families are not blessed with amazing health insurance, or a support group of family and friends who surround them constantly. No, some of these families fight uphill battles alone, and severely underequipped.
We have partnered with a Hospital we believe in. Dayton Children’s has done some AMAZING work in its existence, and we believe their values line right up with our families. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) has families in it non-stop who fight difficult battles with children. With the fund we have set up in Harrison’s name, it will help some of these needy families have just a little better chance at survival.
I know many of you have followed our blog, and race updates very carefully. You have been part of that amazing support staff that helped Emily, myself, and our families get through what was (and still is) a difficult time. Some of you have signed up for the race, whether to run, or as a sponsor. Thank you SO much for that, we are currently in a pretty good spot 1-month out.
I want to speak to people who have not signed up yet. For some of you, running is not your thing, I get it. Fortunately for you this is a 5k/10k run OR walk. Since I have recently torn my acromioclavicular joint, I will be one of those walkers. My wife will be 37 weeks pregnant, she will be a walker. Some of you are saying, well I have small kids, and you probably don’t allow strollers…WRONG! Bring your stroller out; I know many who are in fact doing that. I should mention now that our guest (s) of honor include Miss Nora Rose Yusko, and her mom Aleisa. Nora was diagnosed with Trisomy 18 over a year ago, and she is showing everyday what it means to be a fighter. God put her mother Aleisa into my life, and she inspired me to start blogging. Some of you just need that little push to sign up. You are on the fence, and just need a little shove in the right direction.
I could go on, but this is getting long. I am asking you, as a brother, a cousin, a friend, an acquaintance, a former high school or college friend, a colleague, and insert any other title in here, to don’t just THINK about signing up, but actually sign up. Now is the time to act, now is the time to help yourself out by getting some exercise, but to also help out countless children and parents in the future, who while you may never meet, will have an impact that goes far beyond what they will ever know.
Our family motto is FINISH STRONG. Registration for this race has been open since January 1st. We have one month left (only 2 weeks to guarantee an amazing t-shirt). Help me show Harrison, and all his friends he has met up in heaven what it really means to FINISH STRONG. I owe him that much as his earthly father.
You can sign up for the race directly by going here: http://www.active.com/running/beavercreek-oh/harrisons-heroes-5-and-10k-2013
If you want to know more information on our story, you can go to www.heroes4harrison.com
Thank you so much for everything, I really appreciate it.
James Mummert- Harrison’s dad