We: Atena, Jofre, Aiant, Enees, Natalia, Adrià and all who are with us to continue doing races, keep fighting for a happier life, to overcome difficulties and impediments that involve rare diseases and disabilities.
And that’s what we do. We run marathons to live unique experiences, and to make out of an effort a vital delight.
And we run together, some bring encourament, others push, in order to reach the goal that is what it is, either way, by foot or in a wheelchair.
In May 2002 our daughter Atena was born with a malformation called "Persistent cloaca syndrome". A rare disease, which affects less than 1 in 200,000 births. The fact that it’s "rare" means that it is so infrequent that it does not even deserve economic efforts, may it be in research or pharmacy, in studying, in palliate them. They are not "profitable". But who says economy is about justice? The chaos is that we carried on. She has moved on, despite everything.
She has been operated on multiple occasions from birth. Once taking the intestine by the belly, another rebuilding the anus, urethra and vagina, then the kidneys and the spine now. Always with complications, never correcting the defects from the first attempt. Not even within that she was lucky.
In one of these operations, on the spine, she left with an acute paresis in one leg and partially in the other. This means paralysis. That is, a nerve was touched and she would have to go in a wheelchair. She would no longer walk or bike as we both liked: excursions through the woods, exploring the banks of the river, archaeologists role-plays...
It was a rough situation. The surprise turned into misunderstanding, misunderstanding in sadness, and sadness in depression. She needed to leave the cycle. She could not give up being happy. And, I must say, she was the one who put a good face to bad weather. She was a worthy fighter of her name: a true goddess of intelligence, wisdom and the struggle for life.
And with this spirit, Team Atena is born, to fight against the odds and put a smile on the legendary career of the hero Pheidippides when, after the battle of Marathon, he ran the 42 km 195 meters to Athens to announce the victory of Greeks over the Persians, reason and freedom of a small town on mysticism and submission to a huge empire that seemed, only seemed, inevitable.
Emulating his feat, like all marathoners in the world, we made the Barcelona on March 13, 2016 and completed it with a time of 3 hours and 18 minutes. The joy of the experience has encouraged us to keep running, keep looking at live fully despite everything and also to be able to explain to encourage others or just to help everyone who might need it, because even though we might not be aware, with very little, one can help a lot.
And remember that, in the end, what matters is not winning, what matters is trying.