If there was one part of the marathon that Rabia was nervous about, it was the prospect of fundraising $1,000, but her fears were soon abated. “It’s really not that hard, people do back you up,” she explained. “You do have to remind them though.” Rabia said that through her reminders and Mercy Home’s good reputation, she was able to meet her fundraising goal before her training even began in May.
And when it came to race day, Rabia was thrilled with Hero HQ and the race day experience Mercy Home provided. “I was beyond impressed with headquarters and all the different amenities that were there,” she said. “We felt so special.” She loved headquarters so much that she couldn’t wait to get back after finishing the marathon. “I wanted to go back to my Mercy Home family,” she said.
Rabia experienced firsthand what a part of the Mercy Home family she was while running through Mile 16, the Mercy Mile, and saw our kids out cheering for her. “That meant so much to me,” she said. “When I saw the kids out there, I was so emotional. I was doing this for a greater cause, it’s not just for you.”
Now, more than a month after finishing her first marathon, Rabia describes the experience as “life-changing.” “I’ve become a happier, more confident person because I ran the marathon,” she said. Because of her wonderful experience, it was a no-brainer for Rabia to sign up as a Hero for the 2018 marathon. “I had to run with them again,” she said. She has shared her journey with friends, and they have also decided to sign up as Heroes. “I didn’t realize how many people I was inspiring,” she said. “I got people who don’t even run to sign up for the marathon!” Rabia encourages anyone who is considering running as a Hero to take the leap.