The blog where Bec Wassner talks about sisterhood, cancer, and the UCF.
It was a huge honor to be recognized by the Ulman Fund at last Saturday's Blue Jean Ball. My sister, Laurel, and I received the Fight award which "celebrates young adults whose lives have been touched by cancer and regardless of prognosis or outcome, have confronted the disease with purpose, grace and fight." We've been representatives of the Ulman Fund since I picked up a water bottle with the UCF logo on it at the Columbia Iron Girl Triathlon in 2007. Everyday, I used that water bottle at swim practice and would stare at the logo and think, I wish I had known about this organization 5 years ago. After a few weeks, Laurel and I talked about the water bottle and decided to call Brock to find out more about UCF and to see how we could be involved. From that initial phone call, everyone at UCF has been so supportive of everything Laurel and I have done and have helped us tell our story to thousands of people, with the hope that it would inspire people in the fight against cancer.
I've been a pro triathlete for 5 years and when I first started out, I'd meet people, they'd find out I had a sister and they'd say, "Oh, you have a sister, does she race too?" I'd respond, "uh, no...she doesn't race" and leave it at that. As time went on, I'd meet more people and they'd ask me about my sister and why she wasn't a triathlete too. I'd respond, "well...she was sick for awhile," and change the subject. Last year, when Laurel started racing, people would say, "I see that you have a twin sister and she races too." My response: "yes, I do have a twin sister, she a pro triathlete AND she beat CANCER."
It wasn't until I started working with the Ulman Fund that I had the courage not to be ashamed of what Laurel and I went through. The story of our cancer experience stayed within our Greenwich Village apartment. It was too hard to talk about it and it felt like nobody understood what we went through. But, now, with the support of UCF and the 70,000 young adults diagnosed with cancer each year, when I get to the starting line of a race, I know that I am stronger and more powerful because of my experience with cancer. And, I know that through my actions, other people will be inspired to be strong and powerful and to fight.
Thank you to the Ulman Family, Brock, Brian, Kelly and everyone at UCF for giving me the opportunity to be involved in the FIGHT to improve the lives of young adults affected by cancer.
Pro Triathlete, Team Fight Member, UCF advocate