Every life has value and must be preserved, nurtured and celebrated to its greatest potential.

OneLifeWarrior advocates an unapologetic approach to living through Health Awareness and Risk Reduction in overcoming the challenges of life. It is our goal to create a living OneLifeWarrior metaphor of Resiliency and to inspire all Warriors to take the initiative in determining the course of their lives regardless of the adversity that lay before them.

OneLifeWarrior is founded as a multi-year campaign to foster Resiliency in service members, families and in America’s citizens. The OneLifeWarrior Campaign is dedicated to developing a Warrior spirit in everyone. Being a Warrior means combining physical and mental toughness with assuming responsibility for one's actions. “One Life” seeks to raise the national conscience on issues of individual and family wellness programming and long-term care for veterans. The Resiliency Run is the annual demonstration of our commitment to the ideals of the OneLifeWarrior Campaign.


OneLife News:

E.B. White’s Note on Humanity

OneLife Warriors, I wanted to share a post by good friend Dave Bois to lift your spirits today…thanks, Dave. Credit to the author et al…

White’s missive, penned on March 30, 1973, when he was 74, endures as a spectacular celebration of the human spirit:

Dear Mr. Nadeau:

As long as there is one upright man, as long as there is one compassionate woman, the contagion may spread and the scene is not desolate. Hope is the thing that is left to us, in a bad time. I shall get up Sunday morning and wind the clock, as a contribution to order and steadfastness.

Sailors have an expression about the weather: they say, the weather is a great bluffer. I guess the same is true of our human society — things can look dark, then a break shows in the clouds, and all is changed, sometimes rather suddenly. It is quite obvious that the human race has made a queer mess of life on this planet. But as a people we probably harbor seeds of goodness that have lain for a long time waiting to sprout when the conditions are right. Man’s curiosity, his relentlessness, his inventiveness, his ingenuity have led him into deep trouble. We can only hope that these same traits will enable him to claw his way out.

Hang on to your hat. Hang on to your hope. And wind the clock, for tomorrow is another day.

Sincerely,

E. B. White

We must never dismiss Goodness in the heart of Humanity, even in its darkest moments…the spark of life that has carried us thus far will, in turn, lead us from the folly of our fate…I for one, refuse to give up on us, and I have seen the darkest sides of the human experience, believe me. So too, have I looked into the eyes of a dying man as he fought to not “go gentle into that good night” and witnessed the ember of this hope seen with “blinding sight, on sad height”. Patiently, I will wait on the weather’s “bluff,” the “break in the clouds” and the restoration of our path to flowered fields. Join me, I’ll meet you there…

Keep running, OneLife Warriors…I’ll see you tomorrow!

“Spite the Devil and Endure”

Over the past two weeks, I have been reminded a hundred times over that when we are not at our best, it seems that others are at their best and that has made all the difference in my recovery from an embolic stroke that injured the right temporal region of my brain on 25 August. This experience has been simultaneously one of the most humbling, and remarkably, the most uplifting of my life. Essentially, having to give up total control of my life to the kindness of others has revealed what was no doubt a very unhealthy lack of faith in the goodness of people in what had truly been a solitary life as an island up to this point. Not being able to do whatever I want, when I want to, which includes driving, working, running and splitting wood or other tasks has brought me much closer to my friends and family in my appreciation for their generosity and willingness to rescue the boys and I. The fact that this happened the same week as a move to a new house and the boys to a new school system notwithstanding, was a pretty big deal and would never have worked if platoons of fellow soldiers, friends and family had not arrived with willing hands to lift and move, say nothing of the plates and dishes of food that new neighbors have dropped off.

I especially wanted to share with you the wisdom of a personal hero that has been particularly valuable to me and my resilience…Jeremy Libby knows a thing or two about overcoming challenges in life and he shared the following with me a few days ago, and when I am feeling frustrated or overwhelmed, I go back and re-read it…I hope you too, will find inspiration in his gente assurance….Jeremy wrote, “You’ll find–if you haven’t already–that recovery begins with a choice, with a conscious decision to carry on, no matter the severity of hardship or intractability of adversity. When that decision is made, a thousand hands emerge from the darkness to lift you up and set you back on your path. And we may not overcome every obstacle, we may not be able to make our bodies whole again, but we can spite the devil and endure.” Truth and motivation that has turned what could have been a tragedy into a Stroke of Luck….thank you my friend. I am a mere shadow of the man that you are and will aspire to carry this message to others as you have generously done for me.

God bless you OneLife Warriors…keep running and I’ll see you tomorrow!

After the Fall

For those of you who haven’t heard…I was fortunate enough to survive an Embolic Stroke that affected the right temporal region of my brain on Monday. I am very lucky that I did not sustain more serious damage in many ways and wish to thank the many, many people who rallied to my side as I lay in both the Inland Hospital ICU and at Maine Medical Center over the past week. While, it was both a terrifying and humbling experience, I have to say that this near calamity completely affirmed the cushion of love and support that prevented the true devastation of my family, and may have actually saved my life as well. The neuro scientific achievements associated with brain injuries alone are amazing, say nothing of the skill and careness of the neuro critical care teams at these hospitals, to include the counselors and clergy, not the least of whom was Father Bob Vallencourt who assisted in my first confession and offered the blessed sacrament of annointing the sick to bolster my Faith in recovery as we prayed together. To the many nurses, CNAs and lab workers who passed as shadows in the the middle of the night “just a stick” through dozens of blood draws and vitals checks…I thank you for your compassion, humor and kindness. My many soldiers, Beta Brothers, family and friends also lifted the load from my shoulders and allowed the move to a new house, the boys’ first week at a new school and my transition to home possible….were it not for your love, I never could have come home to truly rest and recover as I have. It’s amazing that as hard as I hit when I fell, you lifted me from the muck an mire to stand again, and I will never forget, nor be able to repay you for picking me up both physically and spiritually. For you, I pledge to recover and run at 100% again with a focus on advocating the process marathon of stroke survival and rehabilitation from TBI for our soldiers. As always, I will do my best to set a good personal example of Resilience as a OneLife Warrior and lead the way in my own recovery as just another marathon in life that has no option for failure….for those who are counting on us, we must never, never, never quit. Climb that mountain until you get to the panoramic view at at the top and life will appear difference that much closer to god, I promise. Again, thank you to all and Keep running, OneLife Warriors…I’ll see you tomorrow!! I grately look forward to the Auburn Lakes Half Marathon in a few weeks as my first time speaking and running since this incident…I will continue to take is try slow and consult my doctors before I step out too far, too soon…

Running this Weekend?

OneLife Warriors! Its great to see so many members of our Veterans Community and their families participating in road and trail races all over the country. Whether part of a team or on your own, congratulations for getting out and demonstrating your resilience.

One of the most important aspects of being a part of running events is that you are automatically surrounded by positive, uplifting people…these characteristics are synonymous with the running crowd and you will always be welcome.

So lace up this weekend, find your local 5K running event and walk, run or roll your way to victory!

God bless you, OneLife Warriors…keep running and I’ll see you tomorrow!!

The 25K Lifetime Run

A few weeks ago my son Harrison and I ran the Pineland Trails 25K trail together as the first race of the summer series. As a 14 year old, his running ability has improved considerably through the spring track season and over the past few years that have seen him grow from a gangly sixth grader to a 6 foot distance runner. He completed his first half marathon and several 10K races last summer and I am pretty sure that this is the last season that I will be able to go stride for stride with him, given is natural attributes and work ethic.

Running with him is always an emotional experience regardless of the scale of the event, whether it’s one of our “run, walk and talk” three milers or an actual race. There is something that resonates in a father’s heart that makes it impossible to separate the little boy that once ran laughing at my side as a child and the young man that now led the 15 mile course around Bradbury Mountain. Such was the case on that Sunday morning when filtered columns of light beamed through the trees revealing the soft lines of my baby boy’s face, soon to be a grown man.

While we ran and talked throughout much of the course, during the silent periods my mind pondered the role of running in the development of children and how it incrementally marks the stages of our relationships. Indeed, the progression of crawling, walking, running, bike riding and driving all have one thing in common…each leads to their ultimate departure and entry into the world.

We as parents are trapped between emotionally opposing responsibilities to both hold our children close, while preparing them to be strong enough to leave us. We run beside them as long as we can, picking them up when they fall, only to place them their feet or on the bike to try again. Though we wish we could, all the instructions and coaching in the world cannot truly teach them to walk or run or ride a bike…they just have to know that are beside them until they learn intrinsically a sense of balance and natural propulsion; both are natural metaphors for life.

Such was the case as I watched Harrison run and think his way through the hills and dales of our first 25K together. I savored every moment as I always do, but was also astutely aware that he is very strong now and the guard has changed. This will be my last summer running with him by my choice…all future summers, he will run with his dad by his own choice. If I have done my job well as his father, he will want to run at his old dad’s pace until I can’t run anymore. This 25K run through the Maine fields and forests began when Harrison was born and I hope that it never ends.

God bless you OneLife Warriors…keep running and I’ll see you tomorrow.