Project Purple Reflections

As the dust settles on our first Project Purple event and we have a chance to step back and look at things we can clearly see that the 410 community can accomplish great things when we come together. From each dollar raised to each rep completed we did an awesome job of spreading awareness of pancreatic cancer. We also raised $8,165 for research and financial aid. A big thank you to everyone that helped make this possible.

When we first set a goal for this I had no idea what to expect. I punched in $3,000. A few months later it was up to $4,000. I was talking with Sam about what to put in for our next goal and she said $10,000. I laughed.  But here we are and it looks like she wasn’t so far off. And now we have next years goal!

Being able to put on this event and talk about my dad is something I never thought I would be able to do. Just last year I couldn’t look at a picture of him without getting emotional. My individual growth since his passing is a constant reminder that everything in life is fluid. Where we are now isn’t where we are going to be. Good, bad or indifferent.

A couple of weeks ago a basketball player named Derrick Rose scored 50 points in an NBA game. In 2011 he was the MVP of the league. Since then he has been injured, cut and traded multiple times. He was given one more chance with a team in Minnesota. The first minute of this post game interview summarizes these emotions. The emotions of not accepting your current position as your future position.

He could have given up. Accepted that all of the injuries and cast offs meant the universe didn’t want him playing basketball. Instead, he dug in deeper and “worked his ass off” to get to where he knew he should be.

I had a vivid dream about my dad the other night. It seems the only dreams I have that I remember are with him in them. They aren’t incredibly often but they do happen. In this dream he beat pancreatic cancer only to be diagnosed with the disease again a short time later. The part that is still stuck in my head is him sitting in a lawn chair shaking his head in disbelief. The same shake of the head that he did often throughout his final few months. I assume I had this dream because I was watching a Steve Jobs video about how he beat the disease only to die from it a few years later.

If I have learned anything from the past 3+ years since my dad died it is that things don’t go as planned and you have no idea when your number will be called. Do what you can to make yourself happy. Take risks, laugh, cry, enjoy friends, love, and most importantly live.