Dawn Wink: Dewdrops

Writing, Teaching, Language, Landscape, Life

Every Mother Counts – Running for Global Maternal Health

15 Comments

14690971_10210738421960335_2263520068180806036_n

Finish line! Duke City Half Marathon, 2016

How about we do something great for the world that is far more expansive than political parties or elections?

A few months ago, I discovered the organization Every Mother Counts (EMC) an organization founded by Christy Burlington Burns to raise awareness and funds for global maternal health.

Run through the desert

Run through the desert with Clyde.

I’ve been a runner for 30+ years. For the past 25 years, running a marathon has been one of my life goals. My running has always been private—a sacred time to be alone, dream, plan, laugh, cry, sweat, push myself, connect with the elemental; the land, my spirit, possibilities and potential for the future. The 3 R’s of constant inspiration and partnership in life: ‘Reading, Running, and ‘Riting.’

O'Keeffe on the ranch.

O’Keeffe on the ranch.

My only partners as I run are first the four-footed kind, first my beloved O’Keeffe and now the indomitable, Clyde. I don’t run with headphones, music, or people. That is my time to be and listenWith the discovery of Every Mother Counts, this sacred, private time had the potential to make a difference in the lives of women and children around the world. This organization inspired me to bring the very private to the public. 

With the discovery of EMC, my running takes on new purpose. I think of the women featured in documentary film by Turlington, “No Woman, No Cry.”

wyatt-and-luke-1998

Wyatt, 2 years old; Luke, 3 months, before the race.

dawn-runningI ran half marathon 18 years ago. Luke was 3-months old, Wyatt was 2-years old, and we loaded up and drove from California (52 feet above sea level) to Steamboat Springs, Colorado (6,732 ft. above sea level) the day before the race.

I had never heard of acclimating for altitude. One really has to question running a half marathon at high altitude 3 months postpartum. Yet at the time, it seemed like the perfect thing to do. I ran the next morning. 

When I completed the race altitude sickness set in and my main memory of this time is  of intense pain and being curled up in the fetal position on asphalt on the side of the highway, breastfeeding a 3-month old Luke, my head on the paint lines of the highway, the wheels of vehicles speeding by. I thought, “This must be the lowest moment of my life.” Yet, I had finished.

Through the years the goal of running a marathon stayed with me. With the discovery of EMC, running now had the potential to create positive effects in a world desperate for it. I trained for the Duke City Half Marathon in Albuquerque, New Mexico to raise awareness for Every Mother Counts.

14724466_10210736375189167_8009067966160563164_n

Before the race, October 2016.

Of course, I had my Frida Kahlo earrings on and her spirit ran with me. 

14724350_10210774592904586_6778357340550476449_n

Cottonwoods lined the trail and hot air balloons hung above.

14650482_10210738526362945_8113109568123998311_n

Cottonwoods and hot air balloons along the trail.

I crossed the finish line in 2:23, my main goal completed—to finish. Turlington describes best the inspiration and work of EMC:

25 years after setting the goal, I now train to run the Tucson Marathon on December 10, 2016, in support of Every Mother Counts and global maternal health. When I listen to the news the national discourse in the US that defies belief and the faces of migrants forced from their home around the world desperate for safety and peace, the need of the world overwhelms. But perhaps if we each do one thing that calls to us, what may seem small may make a world of difference. Please join me in the journey: 

Now, I just need to run those 26.2 miles for us.

early-morning-running-with-clyde

Early morning running with Clyde. #everymothercounts

Advertisements

Author: Dawn Wink

Dawn Wink is a writer and educator whose work explores the beauty and tensions of language, culture, and place.

15 thoughts on “Every Mother Counts – Running for Global Maternal Health

  1. Pingback: 2017: One Thing | meadowsbygrace

  2. Pingback: “The thing you think you cannot do.” A Marathon for Every Mother Counts | Dawn Wink: Dewdrops

  3. This is such a moving commentary on how your private and personal goals have converged in support of Every Mother Counts. Congratulations and best wishes as you prepare for and run the next marathon in AZ.

  4. Thanks for sharing your lovely story.

    Patty Armstrong, GCDF
    Senior Career Services Coordinator
    Back to Work 50+ WESI Project Manager
    Santa Fe Community College
    6401 Richards Ave.
    Santa Fe, NM 87508
    505-428-1406
    patty.armstrong@sfcc.edu
    http://www.sfcc.edu/offices/career-services/

    “No matter what path you choose.
    I want to make sure it’s you choosing it.
    Not someone else.” –Michelle Obama

  5. Congratulations. My heart cheers for you and will be cheering in December.

  6. Dawn, now I have one more reason to respect you! You Go Girl❣️

  7. You’re a badass, little lady. ❤️️

  8. Dear Dawn, I’m long overdue congratulating you on running a half marathon, that is amazing and takes a lot of dedication. Running for Global Maternal Health is great incentive, hats off to you. Best wishes and health while training for the full marathon. It sounds like running is your medicine for health and sanity! Much love, Dan

    • Dear Dan, thanks so very much! The half marathon was a big milestone and keeps me running to do the full marathon for Every Mother Counts. I ran 15 miles on Sunday and felt great after. 20 miles this weekend. YES on running is my medicine for health and sanity — at least I hope so! Thank you again! Love, Dawn

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s