Back in February, Ryan and I went to the clubhouse. I was going to the gym and Ryan was going to play at the teen room. As we were leaving, he pointed at the advertisement below and asked if we could do this. It looked like fun and since he asked I said lets do it.
The story behind this walk centers on the builder and designer of the Rancho Sahuarita community. His name is Bob Sharpe. He was diagnosed in 2016 with a terminal brain cancer, but chose to actively live out his remaining days. He said “I realized I had everything to gain by spending the remaining days of my life having an optimistic, positive and grateful attitude.” “Waiting for the other shoe to drop can be stressful, but only if I allow myself to waste the precious time that I may have left by worrying and postponing doing the things that make me happy.”
One day, Sharpe’s son called him and asked how he was doing. He responded by saying, “Today is a good day.” That simple phrase became the rally cry for his family and the theme of the walk. They had T-shirts, bracelets and other items with that phrase. Everyone got a water bottle and bracelet that had that phrase written on them.
Before the 5k began, Ryan ran over to the craft table and created a sign to carry during the walk. As we were walking, several people asked him about his sign and he was quick to tell them why he was walking and all about his Mom. Those were great moments. He has moved so far from the little boy who didn’t want to stay in our house, ride in our car or have anything to do with past memories to one who chooses to thrive and seize life every day.
We started walking and Ryan thought we should stop after 2 laps as that was good enough. We talked about the people who gave us money and that we owed it to them to finish the race. As we were walking around for lap 2, we talked about how hard Theresa fought the fight even when she was tired, sore and didn’t want to continue. As we rounded the top of the lake, Ryan asked if we could run the last mile. I figured this would last for about one minute so I said let’s do it. To my surprise, he ran all of the last mile, only stopping to walk for 30 seconds. We ran that last mile in just under 9 minutes. That’s pretty good for an old man and a 11 year old Minecraft gamer!
After the walk was over, we drove up to our Oro Valley house to take some items and setup some equipment. As we were driving, the song It Is Well came up on random play. I could hear Ryan singing the song as he was playing on his phone. “Far be it for me to not believe, even when my eyes can’t see. And this mountain thats in front of me, will be throw into the midst of the sea. Through it all, through it all, my eyes are on you. Through it all, through it all it is well.” Yes, Ryan, it is well.
To everyone who gave money to this cause, thank you from both of us. The event raised over 360K for cancer research. Factoring out the family members of Bob Sharpe, Ryan was the 7th highest fund raiser for this event. Today is a good day!