‘OK not to be OK’: Veteran laces up for marathon for Home Base -EnglishHindiBlogs-News

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So many veterans and service members are struggling with the invisible wounds of war. One Navy veteran laces up his shoelaces to let others know there is light at the end of the tunnel. “I never said, “Yes. Let’s go for a run,” said Navy veteran Yuma Haidara. “It was almost forced on me. In high school, I played a lot of sports, and to join the army, you just need to run.” Running started as a convenient way to stay in shape. “I told myself again that I need to move, and the easiest way to do this is to buy a pair of running shoes,” she said. But running turned into something more when Haidara was selected by lottery to run the Chicago Marathon, her first 26.2-mile race. “I thought, ‘Maybe I’m training for a marathon. Because when they choose you, they take money from you. So it’s not like you can say, “It doesn’t matter,” she said. One marathon followed another and the 2021 New York Marathon was on the doorstep, but this race was different as Haidara was running her own. “Knowing that he struggled so much and couldn’t… Finding the help he needed was not easy,” Haidara said. She lost her best friend, with whom she served, by committing suicide. He was not the first of her unit. “My battalion has a very high suicide rate for some reason. None of us can understand this. We just say that we are cursed. Something like a joke with black humor,” Haidara said. When approached about running a marathon to raise money for Home Base veterans, Haidara happily accepted. “It meant a lot to me to be able to run for him. But I also just want him to know that there is a program like Home Base that he will have access to,” Haidara said. But Haidara also struggled, and for some time now. “I found that I no longer enjoy life,” she said. The night before the marathon, she shared her struggle with other members of the Home Base team, who immediately provided support, resources, and assistance. “At that moment, it was normal that not everything was in order,” she said. “Home Base saved my life because they were the first step to my healing.” Now Haidara is coming into her own and training for the Boston Marathon with Home Base veterans. “The more funds we get, the more veterans we can help, and in this country a lot of veterans are suffering,” Haidara said. “So for me, it’s all about giving back and making sure everyone knows it’s okay to not be okay.”

So many veterans and service members are struggling with the invisible wounds of war. One Navy veteran laces up his shoelaces to let others know there is light at the end of the tunnel.

“I never said, “Yes. Let’s go for a run,” said Navy veteran Yuma Haidara. “It was almost forced on me. In high school, I played a lot of sports, and to join the army, you just need to run.”

Running started as a convenient way to stay in shape.

“I told myself again that I need to move, and the easiest way to do this is to buy a pair of running shoes,” she said.

But running turned into something more when Haidara was selected by lottery to run the Chicago Marathon, her first 26.2-mile race.

“I thought, ‘I think I’m training for a marathon. Because when they choose you, they take money from you. So it’s not like you can say, “It doesn’t matter,” she said.

One marathon turned into another and the 2021 New York Marathon was on the doorstep, but this race was different as Haidara was running in her own.

“Knowing that he struggled so much and couldn’t find the help he needed was hard,” Haidara said.

She lost her best friend, with whom she served, by committing suicide. He was not the first of her unit.

“My battalion has a very high suicide rate for some reason. None of us can understand this. We just say that we are cursed. Something like a joke with black humor,” Haidara said.

When Haidara was approached to run a marathon to raise money for home base veterans, she performed with pleasure.

“It meant a lot to me to be able to run after him. But I also just want him to know that there is a program like Home Base that he will have access to,” Haidara said.

But Haidara also struggled, and for some time now.

“I found myself not enjoying life anymore,” she said.

The night before the marathon, she shared her struggle with other members of the Home Base team, who immediately provided support, resources, and assistance.

“In that moment, it was normal not to be okay,” she said. “home base saved my life because they were the first step towards my healing.”

Now Haidara keeps up with the times and prepares to run the Boston Marathon with home base veterans.

“The more funds we get, the more veterans we can help, and in this country a lot of veterans are suffering,” Haidara said. “So for me, it’s all about giving back and making sure everyone knows it’s okay to not be okay.”

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