Running for More

Seeing someone you love have their life transformed by a disease or disability can change everything.

Cancer, heart disease, HIV, paralysis…

I could list hundreds of conditions, and I know each would strike a chord in at least one reader’s heart. Cone-Rod Dystrophy is probably something you’ve never heard of. It didn’t mean anything to me until recently when my mom was finally diagnosed with it.

Back in the day: Mom and me

Over the past few years, she’s undergone test after test as her vision blurred, colors faded, and she couldn’t even read a book anymore. This rare condition is causing the deterioration, and while she probably won’t lose her sight completely, there are no real treatments and little hope of improvement.

Resources like specialized glasses and magnifying tools are helping her get back a semblance of normal, but I know it’s hard. My kind and positive mother rarely lets on that’s it hard, but I know better. You don’t lose most of your sight without emotions of fear and frustration.

Last Easter

I’m running the Lake Wobegon Trail Marathon next month, as you know, and I’d been pondering something to dedicate the effort too. Training for the sake of the journey and the goal is definitely worth it, but I couldn’t shake the thought that this one needed something more.

I started researching charities that help the blind or do research on eye conditions. I found more organizations than I could have imagined, but a few really stood out to me. So I talked it over with my mom and narrowed it down to one.

Helen Keller International (HKI)

HKI works with the poor throughout Africa and Asia to combat preventable blindness, provide treatment, and help with good nutrition. They’re also reaching children here in America with free screenings and eyeglasses to help kids who’s families would otherwise struggle to afford them.

HKI has an excellent A+ charity rating, and as I read more about what they do it is fully evident they use resources wisely. They don’t have a formal charity running or athletic event program, but that doesn’t make me any less motivated to help support them.

For my own part, I’m making a donation in honor of my mom for this race.

For your part, I’m asking you to think about whether this cause is close to your heart, too?

Maybe you know someone who’s blind or struggling as they lose their sight, and you’d like to make a donation in their honor? Maybe you’d like to give a small gift just because? It’s easy to donate online, anonyymously if you like, or you can even mail in a donation.

{If you wish to make a donation in honor of my mom for this marathon, you can note Marathon for Mom under the section where it asks for “Tribute Information” or “How did you hear about HKI.” You can also list my mom’s name if you know her. They will track donations for me with this information.}

Helen Keller International – Online Donation

Helen Keller International – Mailing Address for Donation

Donate via PayPal by directing your gift to

I also need to say thanks to all of you for your encouragement and positive comments during my training these last few months. Sometimes it’s been hard to get out in the cold (or step onto the treadmill yet another morning), but having this community of support really blesses me. God knew what He was doing when He put it in my head to start a blog! I appreciate your comments via the blog, twitter, facebook, and email. Whether I know you in person or only online, I value you as a reader and friend. Thank you.

About Lisa

Hi, I'm Lisa. Dairy farmer's wife and Minnesotan to the core, I write about rural farm life, running down country roads, and the food, faith, and family that bind everything together. Follow along on my journey.
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6 Responses to Running for More

  1. What an honorable cause to promote and one that is near and dear to your heart. I’m going to share this around 🙂 I hope the days get easier for your mom, it’s never easy facing difficult medical situations as a family.

  2. That is a great cause for you to run for – sorry to hear about your mom. Cancer, specifically ovarian, as well as Alzheimer’s, are causes that resonate with me because I’ve had close family members struggle with them.

    • Lisa says:

      Thanks for sharing your own causes, Kathy. I will pray for those struggling with them. Cancer is such a hard thing to deal with, as is Alzheimer’s.

  3. Pingback: The Friday Favored: 6th edition | Beef and Sweet Tea

  4. Suzanne says:

    What a wonderful cause to run for Lisa! It always makes such a different when it’s something that hits close to home.

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