Over the years it's become especially obvious that I'm just not good at asking people for money; it's been something I've struggled with all my life. We never negotiated for allowances with our parents. Our 4-H projects always sold to the people who bid the highest, but not because we had ever sent them letters asking them to buy our animals. If we sent a letter, it was asking them to support the fair and the youth in general, but never just us. Even when I worked at Farm Bureau and my job was specifically to recruit sponsors, I still struggled with asking people for money. Any amount was fine with me just so long as they were giving of their own good will.
But now here I am again, asking for money. My Pelotonia profile says it all: I'm riding to raise money and awareness for cancer research in Ohio. Our Ohio hospitals are making huge progress in treating and preventing cancer and this research will provide hope to many people this year, next year and next decade. Has cancer affected my family in the past? Heck yes, it has. That's the main reason we live in Ohio now, because we moved here to support my grandpa as he fought and ultimately won his battle with cancer. This year two of my friends have also been fighting cancer, both with great outlooks. And a friend at Amanda's church is in a huge struggle this year as we pray for a miracle.
So that's why I'm riding. I don't do cancer research, nor am I a nurse or a doctor, nor am I superb at comforting those who suffer. But I am athletically built enough that I can ride the miles. And so I ride, because that's my part in this. I ride so that you and others know that we are trying to fight cancer and help those who suffer. But riding isn't enough, I have to also actually raise the money for the ride.
And that's where asking comes in. The hardest thing that I have to do for this Pelotonia, harder than the training or the bike search (which is now complete!) is the asking for money. I've posted to Facebook, contacted old friends and even sent out letters now to corporations and politicians, organizations and well-connected friends. And now I'm back to here. If you read this blog and can even spare $5 or less, please consider donating. This link will take you to my profile where you can choose to donate or not after reading mine and other peoples' stories on the Pelotonia website. Please consider giving to support this huge effort which encompasses nearly 4,000 riders.
For any readers interested, my wife and I are also doing sponsor jerseys with logos. This could be a great advertising opportunity which would be an outreach message into the community about local support.