It was with great sadness, that we have learned that our dear friend Amy has passed. While I know that there is much grief with those of us still here missing her, we all rejoice that she is now at peace.

I feel compelled to share that over the past week, I have seen an outpouring of love like no other. Amy's Facebook wall is filled with literally hundreds of posts. The post I did for her Sunday has become the most viewed entry in this little project of mine. All of that is a testament to Amy. I share this to continue to compel each of you to tell those you care about how much they matter.

Selfishly - it was such a gift for me to know that Amy did see my blog post for her before she left. I DM'd her on Twitter. Amy, of course, was special enough that even in her final days she was sure to keep letting us know she was seeing our messages, and the DM I have from her in response sits at the top of my DM list...I look at it every day. But, bigger than that - it has really warmed my heart to know that Amy saw how much she meant to people - and why. She knows that she matters to so many. And, I believe that that is really all any of us wants...to know that we matter, to know - at the end of the day - that we did good - even just once.

Please - in honor of Amy, or of someone special to you, won't you consider using even one minute today to tell someone what they mean to you...while they can still hear you?

We love you, Amy - forever, and always.


DAY 316. The Saying Goodbye One.

For those of you who don't know part of my impetus for writing this blog, I will restate it here - I believe fully that we should tell those we love and appreciate that we do NOW. The speeches of love and gratitude and "(s)he was so great..." at a funeral are made too late. For those words to matter, say them to the person directly. The older I get, the more I realize that life is too short for so much of the petty stuff people engage in every day. Would you treat those in your life this way if it was their last?

But never have I felt quite so rushed to do so. You see, today, on Easter Sunday, my friend Amy who has been facing a sudden and rapid fight with cancer wrote us all a note on Facebook to tell us that she is dying and that time is short. That was the first line "I am dying". So, without further ado I must get to the heart of it.

Amy - there are two main things I want to tell you about yourself:

First - you are brave and LOVING. You have been so conscious throughout this ordeal to share it with others. I do not know that I could be so open when faced with such consequences. I truly believe that your love of others and compassion for those in your life is unprecedented and, even now, as you prepare to leave this earth, part of your last message to us was to ask us to pray for those you will leave behind. You are facing this head-on, you are strong enough to tell us the reality, you are strong enough to trust us with your situation, and through it all you have loved everyone in your life enough to worry about them and to thank people for doing things for you. Amazing doesn't even begin to describe...

Second - you are LOVED. I love you, Amy. I love you for pursuing so many interests in your life, I love you for being open and kind, I love you for being funny and smart. But more so than little old me, you are loved by so many. I am sitting here now watching so many people - some I know, some I do not - express what you've meant to them, how much you are valued, all that makes you special and how thankful we all are to know you.

Of course I should not be surprised...I have seen these qualities in you as long as I have known you. Amy - you have gifted every person you've interacted with with the joy of knowing you...I wish you godspeed and peace in this final part of your journey here. I know heaven awaits and while we will miss you here, the love remains.


Day 315. The Browns One.

There have been a few of these lately, and, as I mentioned previously, I do like to see "famous" people leading the charge of "doing good". Couple that with a "celebrity on twitter" who not only interacts with people instead of using it as a mindless PR generator and this story became post-worthy for me.

My words here will be brief as I believe this story speaks for itself...please read!

Joe Haden's Generosity


Day 314. The Registration One.

So perhaps a bit over a year ago...randomly on Twitter...I ended up becoming friends with Ben. And its been one of those weirdly fascinating friendships where we started out talking about the Blue Jackets, but randomly ended up with quite a few common interests...we both run, bike, fight cancer, support LIVESTRONG. It was overall just a pretty cool thing to find someone you'd never know otherwise through one common interest and find out you have a ton in common (well, except for Ohio State but we'll let that go for now ;) )

I also always so appreciate Ben's tweets during training - even if it was 6AM on a Sunday, if I shared I was headed out on the bike, I'd almost always get some sort of encouraging tweet or we'd talk about our training that day or about our upcoming events. Again - just a few exchanges - but their regularity and focus on knowing each other more than superficially was a bright spot whenever they occured.

So, anyway, this week, I was posting about a race that offered an upgrade option with some cool perks but said event wasn't doing the best at marketing how to take advantage of this option...Ben, as always, started chatting with me about what event it was and then...boom!...like five minutes later, he sends me the link and how to take advantage of the upgrade if I wanted to. (Note: this was in the morning and I didn't hear back from the event organizers until 6 PM!!!) Turns out, the registration platform this event was using is one Ben was familiar with so he knew the quirks and how to look for what I needed.

Its not so much just the fact that Ben is pretty darn smart and could figure out a registration site (which usually I can do), its the underlying things that marked this event - and this person - for me. I think in our day-to-day life, we probably see people facing a ton of different things - big and small. To take even a few moments to really find out the info you need to help, and then to actually help is something that doesn't happen often enough. If we can all stay open to those we come in contact with, who knows when we'll be able to help one another...sometimes if you're lucky enough, you may even be the recipient of said help.

To Ben, yes, it was just a registration link, but I place great value on the effort and time you put into finding something for me. I am glad our paths have crossed! :)