This past weekend myself and thirteen other Fisher MHRM students dedicated twelve hours of our lives to the children of Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s hematology and oncology departments during Ohio State’s annual Buckeyethon. The dance marathon took place from 8pm last Friday to 11pm Saturday with dancers choosing one of two twelve hour shifts. I chose to dance the overnight 8pm-8am shift.
As an undergraduate I participated in UCLA’s Dance Marathon so when the opportunity to participate in Ohio State’s version presented itself, I jumped at the chance. As a Buckeyethon dancer we individually pledged to raise a minimum of $100 “for the kids” at Children’s Hospital. As a whole, our MHRM group raised $4,555.13! On the day of we rounded up as much purple gear as we could and went to the Ohio Union to join our fellow purple team dancers along with all of the other students participating in this year’s event. Hundreds of students packed the union for opening ceremonies as we welcomed some of the children from Nationwide along with their families. Speakers reminded us why we were dancing, and we recognized those that were dancing specifically for friends or family members. It was then off to the ballroom to get our twelve hours of dancing started. During our twelve hours we danced, played games, met some amazing kids, made cards, colored pictures, ate, talked, and laughed.
If you have never participated in a dance marathon, it is truly an amazing experience. When you are tired, your feet hurt, your back is sore, and you just want to sit down- those are the times when you remember the kids you are dancing for and the pain that they have to go through on a sometimes daily basis as they battle all different types of cancer. Those thoughts give you strength to jump up and down, keep your blood pumping through your body, and fight through the little bit of pain. Our pain is temporary, and the same may not be able to be said for some of the kids at Nationwide (and across the country fighting similar illness).
In the end, Buckeyethon 2013 raised $608,623.29! The event was absolutely incredible, and it is my hope that next year we can get even more Fisher graduate students involved.