My name is Margaret Paul and I am proud to be apart of team Stop the Clot for the Marine Corp Marathon this coming October 2017!! woohoo! :)
Two years ago, on October 22, 2015, I had my first encounter with blood clots. I was a healthy, 20 year old collegiate track sprinter, who was scared out of my mind to say the least. One clot formed superficially in my left arm, while another formed deep within my left leg, stretching from my IVC all the way down to my popliteal vein in my knee.
After three surgical thrombectomies, four days in the ICU, and a week total in the hospital, the doctors on my case recommended that I withdrawal from school to reside in the Portland area for the remaining of my fall term for follow-up appointments and physical therapy. Countless blood tests were done, and the doctors concluded that I have Leiden FactorV clotting disorder. The trauma to my leg from the clot and thrombectomies caused severe nerve damage and I was not able to walk for a month after the clot episode. As a track runner, this was one of the most difficult parts of the process. I rehabbed, physical therapy 3 times a week, and finally started walking again.
In February of 2016, though out of sprinter shape, I headed back down to school, laced up my spikes and competed in my first race on a track again. I was alive, I was well, and I was running again, it was an absolute miracle. I could not have gotten through the long days in the hospital and months of rehab without my family by my side, which is why I want them to run this marathon with me. They have supported me through countless doctors appointments, blood tests, surgeries, and now, we want to give back together.
I want to tell my story, showing that it is possible to overcome massive obstacles, fight on, and get back on your feet again (literally). I got my love for running from my mom. She is my role model and my best friend. My mom and brother have done a fundraising for charity for the breast cancer foundation for the New York City Marathon and raised over $4,000 each. My goal for fundraising for Stop the Clot would be to raise $5,000. In addition to running to raise funds for the National Blood Clot Alliance, I am also running for my Dad who struggles with A-fib (has had three cardioversions, one ablation, currently on Eliquis), knowing A-fib is a compounding factor in clotting disorders. And if that isn’t enough reason to run the Marine Corp Marathon and raise funds for the National Blood Clot Alliance, to top it all off, my Grandpa was a Marine, fought in the Korean War, and I would love to honor him and his service knowing he’d be watching from Heaven while I run past the Korean War memorial honoring him, and so many others that have served our country.
My mom, and I are honored to represent Stop the Clot while running the Marine Corp Marathon. This will be my first ever marathon, and my mom's last marathon...and I couldn't think of a better way to run it - telling my story, fundraising for Stop the Clot, and bringing awareness for others. Thank you to anyone and everyone who contributes to my fundraiser, I couldn't reach my goal without you all! :)"