by Gail Kansky
A Person with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Immune
Dysfunction Syndrome (PWME/C) gets tired just thinking of running.
They know that running just a short distance will only serve to worsen their
symptoms. That symptom is one that differenciates ME from CFS and that's
one reason why running a grueling 26.2 miles is never even a consideration.
For Jennifer Dominguez, it was. The Youth education counselor from
Illinois decided to run The Boston Marathon with a special purpose in mind.
Jennifer's mother, Lois, has suffered from ME/CFIDS for 15 years. A
healthy and active nurse before she got ill, Lois found herself bedridden
within just a week of her abrupt onset. Knowing of her mother's ongoing
battle, Jennifer decided to enter The 106th Boston Marathon to help raise
funds for ME/CFIDS research. And, like all volunteers for The National
CFIDS Foundation, she did all the work!
Not only did Jennifer train for the grueling race by running between 5
and 20 miles daily, she also had to qualify to enter by running in the
Chicago Marathon twice! Jen sent out about 100 letters to friends and
family members asking them to help support her Marathon Fundraiser. She
was rewarded with donations to support her effort. Her mother and her
husband, Matt, accompanied her to Boston where she finished the race in
under 4 hours and found she still felt good! She didn't finish first and get a
laurel wreath, but she was THE winner for The National CFIDS Foundation
because every patient ended up the victor when the money realized via her
efforts went directly to research endeavors. In fact, the race was in the early
spring and the money went off to a new research project just this months
later in June! As far as we're concerned, Jennifer won The Boston Marathon
because ME/CFIDS patients turned out to be the winners from her efforts!
Most of the donors from The Marathon Fundraiser are listed in this issue.
Newspaper articles in both Illinois and Massachusetts about Jennifer's
Boston Marathon run also helped spread awareness.
The National CFIDS Foundation* 103 Aletha Rd, Needham Ma 02492 * (781) 449-3535 Fax (781) 449-8606