Starting again is hard, when things are never going to be the same. I think when given a new start, it is an opportunity, a time to raise the bar.
I won’t preach, however I know what I want to achieve. I know the path will be hard. Life is full of obstacles (and I have fallen foul of a few) but there is no disgrace in asking for help.
Ellington and Hereson
It really doesn’t seem that long ago I wore a maroon blazer as a Hereson School boy. But years have flown by, and now my eldest son Dylan has started at my old school. I never anticipated a return to school, however stranger things have happened, and it is with this idea that brought me back.
I have set myself two major challenges. Run a marathon for charity. Create a business that I care about. Both take self belief and determination. I have those, but it can also be a lonely journey. I need something to inspire me, something more than me to get excited about, and that’s how I came up with the “Eyepatch challenge”.
A few days ago, I presented myself (with the full backing of the teaching staff) and a challenge for the whole school.
Being left facially disfigured and losing an eye is a big deal. Standing in front of a school and engaging with them is amazing.
“I need your help…”
I presented two assembly’s. The whole school split into two. That’s lot’s of kids…. Silent and attentive, something I am told is unheard of!
Anyway, I am waffling. My talk to the kids was to present my challenge, raise awareness and support me for my marathon.
The challenge: design me an eyepatch.
I told my story, but essentially I wanted them to engage and get involved. Design me an eyepatch, and the winning patch will be the one which I wear on the marathon.
You could hear a pin drop. I hoped for a lot less, or maybe I should say I was overwhelmed, either way the kids, and the school team were amazing, and we all go forward together on this journey.
The great thing about this project is that it is real. I am running a marathon. Up until a few weeks ago I could barely run a bath! I want an eyepatch, it is essential for my adventure, and it also raises awareness.
One of the pupils came up to me after and offered to design my some shirts to wear as well…. awesome!
I am so proud already of those kids, and I know with their help and support, those 26 and a bit miles will hurt a little less!
I have set up a just giving page for my marathon so that any support is given directly to the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity. If you are able to give something towards my target then click here to donate