Support Ricky’s Riders During Cycle for Survival 2022

Supporting rare cancer research is important to me, which is why I’ve joined Cycle for Survival leading Team Ricky’s Riders to raise money to help beat rare cancers.

This year will be my eleventh year of Cycle for Survival taking place in an outdoor event on May 14th and I’m asking for your help to meet our team fundraising goal of $10,000.  If you can contribute, any amount makes a difference.

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Why do I ride? For my father, Richard. 

My father, Richard, was diagnosed with stage four Hodgkin’s Lymphoma a few years ago. He’s currently in remission and doing well following a stem cell transplant and extensive treatment.  He was fortunate to benefit from cancer treatment and advances, but not everyone is as lucky. I ride for my father, but also for those who aren’t as lucky as him. 

For those of you who don’t know about the cause, Cycle for Survival is the movement to beat rare cancers. As a community, we ride in support of research discoveries and clinical breakthroughs that benefit people all over the world.

Click this link to visit my fundraising page and make a donation that will truly make a difference. Any amount has an impact because 100% of your gift will fund rare cancer research led by Memorial Sloan Kettering.

Rare cancer research is underfunded, and people who are diagnosed with these cancers are often left with limited treatment options — sometimes none. The generosity of donors helps fill that funding gap, giving people with a rare cancer hope for a better future.

Learn more about the incredible work- and people this community supports.

Please consider making a donation to Ricky’s Riders By visiting my fundraising page.

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JOIN THE BATTLE and support #CycleforSurvival

Thank you in advance for your contribution!

Winter Break Memories

Family vacations are all about making memories. Whether you prefer a ski getaway or relaxing at the beach, you know you’ve had a successful family vacation when everyone leaves the trip remembering something special. This was certainly the case for us last month on our first family vacation in almost TWO years since the beginning of the pandemic. We left the winter weather behind us in New Jersey to welcome the sunshine of Naples, Florida with our two kids.

We had a magical week relaxing and digitally detoxing as much as possible. We spent a lot of time at the beach, playing in the pool, shopping, playing mini golf and more. Towards the end of the trip, we regrouped over our final dinner and asked Lucas (7) and Reid (5) what the most memorable part of the trip was. Both boys shared that the highlight of the trip was beating us in mini golf and getting ice cream as a reward. It’s the little things that bring the most joy to kids, something we should all remember.

For me, being able to put my phone down and be present with the kids was the best part of being away. This is the first trip that our dinners focused on quality conversations, not on what was happening on the kids’ iPads. It was also special to watch my kids entertain themselves and so easily adjust to new surroundings. Whether they were playing with kids they hardly knew around the pool, enjoying a Shirley Temple, or practicing their cannon balls, it was a treat to see them just be boys and take a break from their screens and the hectic pace of our regular routine.

When they returned to school, they both shared the highlights of the trip with their teachers and classmates— the plane ride, endless swims and beautiful sunsets. My older son integrated these experiences into his creative writing and my younger son came home with drawings of sunshine and swimming pools. 

It also reminded me how much I love the beach. Nothing tops the sound of a wave breaking and a clear view of the water.  It’s a place I can really unwind, relax, and tap into my inner most creativity. We watched the waves in the distance and were lucky enough to spot dolphins in the water. We came home with seashells the kids collected. Just this morning, I found beautiful white sand in my purse from another shell my younger son had hidden.

This experience opened my eyes to the need for lasting memories in the workplace as well. It made me think, what if we redefined part of our leadership approach to include Chief Memory Maker?  What if we were able to get under the hood of the people we lead to really learn what memories were made in the workplace last week? On even their most recent project? Wouldn’t it be helpful to find out what memory is burned in their minds from the specific work they did? This is something I’m going to work on with my team and see how this shapes their daily experiences.

Most people have a desire to be a part of a memory. If you don’t believe me just open your phone after a vacation and watch as people come behind your shoulder to take a sneak peek. I shared photos of my trip with my direct reports just last week and the response was authentic interest.

I’m already busy planning our next vacation and I’m eager to make more memories with my family. And I’m just as excited to create more memories at work.

What are some of your biggest travel- or work-related memories? Leave a comment below to let me know.

Support Ricky’s Riders During #CycleforSurvival 2020

Cycle for Survival is important to me. This year I’m participating in my 9th year of Cycle for Survival on February 1, 2020.

I’m raising money for rare cancer research. Why? For my father, Richard.

My father, Richard, was diagnosed with stage four Hodgkin’s Lymphoma two years ago. He’s been kicking cancers ass after numerous rounds of chemo, immunotherapy and a stem cell transplant, he is in remission and doing well. He’s been fortunate to benefit from cancer treatment and advances, but not everyone is as lucky. I ride for my dad, but also for those who aren’t as lucky as him.

 

I encourage you to visit my fundraising page and make a donation that will truly make a difference.  Here are three reasons why I hope you will support my ride:

1. Rare cancer research is underfunded, leaving people fighting these cancers with few options — sometimes none. Because of the generosity of people like you, Cycle for Survival is changing that.

2. 100% of your gift (yes, every dollar!) will fund research led by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to advance new and better treatments. All funds will be allocated within six months of the events. Cycle for Survival will share what was funded and continue to keep us updated on progress.

3. Discoveries will benefit cancer patients everywhere. Memorial Sloan Kettering treats hundreds of subtypes of cancer each year and collaborates with institutions around the world.

JOIN THE BATTLE and support #CycleforSurvival

Please consider making a donation to Ricky’s Riders By visiting: http://bit.ly/mpcycle20

Thank you in advance for your contribution!

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Support Ricky’s Riders During #CycleForSurvival

#CycleForSurvival is important to me. This year I’m participating in my seventh year of Cycle for Survival on February 2, 2019.

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I’m raising money for rare cancer research. Why? For my father, Richard.

My father, Richard, was diagnosed with stage four Hodgkin’s Lymphoma two years ago. He’s been kicking cancers ass. Now, he’s recovering from a stem cell transplant, in remission and doing well. He’s been fortunate to benefit from cancer treatment and advances, but not everyone is as lucky. I ride for my dad, but also for those who aren’t as fortunate as him.

Click the following link to visit my fundraising page and make a donation that will truly make a difference: https://bit.ly/2PqJruF

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Below are three reasons why I hope you will support Team Ricky’s Riders: 

1. Rare cancer research is underfunded, leaving people fighting these cancers with few options — sometimes none. Because of the generosity of people like you, Cycle for Survival is changing that.

2. 100% of your gift (yes, every dollar!) will fund research led by Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to advance new and better treatments. All funds will be allocated within six months of the events. Cycle for Survival will share what was funded and continue to keep us updated on progress.

3. Discoveries will benefit cancer patients everywhere. Memorial Sloan Kettering treats over 400 subtypes of cancer each year and collaborates with institutions around the world.

JOIN THE BATTLE and support #CycleforSurvival

Thank you in advance for your contribution!

XOXO

Marissa

Three Important Lessons on Conquering Fear I Learned From My Son

 

Fear is only as deep as the mind allows. – Japanese Proverb

I learned a lot last week watching my four year old play and he inspired me to reflect on this experience.  I took my older son, Lucas, out of daycare and went on an adventure to the Liberty Science Center in NJ.  In the middle of the museum is a large climbing feature known as the Infinity Climber.  It’s a suspended play space that is 26 feet wide, 24 feet deep, 19 feet tall, and most importantly, it’s perched 35 feet in the air.  It’s contained by hand threaded wire to prevent any climber from falling 35 feet to the ground below and has 64 pedal-like platforms creating multiple pathways throughout the structure.  In a nutshell, it’s a blast for most who enter, but it’s daunting structure for a four year old.
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Lucas and I have visited the museum several times and he’s always been too afraid to go near the climber. As always, I encouraged him to try and tackle this seemingly massive structure. This time he went to the edge, looked around, took a step and leaped into the structure (see the above photo). In the blink of an eye, he was off to the races!  Once he took that initial step, he was climbing up and down, swinging on the pedals and conquering his fear.  Every so often, he looked and flashed a smile as he continued his way around the Infinity Climber.  I cheered him on and encouraged him to explore and have fun for as long as he wanted.  He spent nearly an hour working his way through  with only a small break for a drink of water and a high five for his mother.

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When we confront our fears, we find out how resilient we really are.  Being able to do so helps us grow and we take away valuable lessons even from a four year old taking on a climbing structure.  My family is my biggest joy in life and I couldn’t help but share this anecdote and some of the lessons I learned from someone much younger than me!

  1. Conquer your fears.  Everyone is afraid of something or other.  The only way you can go ahead in life is by overcoming your fears and conquering them.  We develop confidence when we successfully overcome adversity.  For my son, taking the first few steps in and realizing he couldn’t fall was all he needed to realize he was going to be okay.  Remember, the more challenges we face throughout our lives the more prepared we’ll be to deal with adversity in the future. Don’t wait for fear to put you in a corner, tackle it before it tries to tackle you.
  2. When forced to do so, embrace fear.  Sometimes life is scary. It’s normal to be scared and sometimes life may only give you one opportunity to say YES or to try something new.  The best things in life often happen as we approach the edge of our comfort zone.   We don’t know what we’re capable of until we find ourselves in a situation where we have no choice.
  3. Support systems are key.  Anything we’re confronted with in life, chances are someone has experiences or been through something similar.  Leaning on others and asking them how others have overcome a similar challenge can often help us to shorten our learning curve and identify and take the right actions.

I encouraged my son to explore and take a risk, highlighting how much fun he would have should he try and conquer his fear.  He needed that subtle encouragement to go to the edge and take his first step and the rest is history. If we’re able to accept that our fears are mostly made up within our minds we’re likely to take on new risks within our lives.  As long as we take on thoughtful risk, we will likely grow and be better prepared for the next challenge.

I’d love to know what lessons or advice you have for encouraging people to face fear. Please leave a comment or send me a tweet.  Thanks for reading!