The newest addition to our little family of 3 is...
Nikki!! Evan's new running buddy!!
On Monday I signed Evan up for a program called "Who I Run 4". It's a program designed to pair up runners with people who physically can't run who can act as inspiration for the runners. Evan was assigned a running buddy that night! Nikki lives in Jacksonville, Florida and now runs in honor of Evan. She posts updates from her runs on Facebook so yesterday we were notified when she did her first 6 miles for Evan in a beautiful Florida sunset. 6 MILES!! That's more than I've run in the past month. Way to go Nikki!
First I will explain why I did not initially want to sign up for this program, and then I will explain why I did choose to sign up. At first when I heard about getting a running buddy I felt like I was giving up on Evan being able to walk and run. I like to think, "He's not that disabled. He doesn't need somebody to pity him by doing something for him that they think he can't do for himself." But then the idea came to me that maybe Evan could benefit from this relationship too. I love the idea of having someone who we (Evan, eventually) can look up to as motivation to learn to walk and then run someday. I'm really looking forward to strengthening this mutually-motivating relationship as we get to know Nikki better.
Evan must have been harnessing some Nikki running power as he walked all the way around the block with his walker for the first time ever on Monday night. He is getting SO strong and SO confident.
This program has about 3400 runners waiting to be paired up with buddies. (Nikki had waited since April to be paired up.) If you or anyone you know have a child who physically can't run (yet :) ) then sign up!