One of my best friends (Sarah) recently told me that I should start writing a blog about my life story for my father, Vince DiCroce, and I have a type of story that inspires many. While, my father’s journey throughout his life has been more inspirational than mine, I have learned that without his story I would not have my own.
Let me start out by sharing the three things my father taught me throughout my life: Integrity, honesty, and perseverance. However, it was not until after my father passed that I realized what each word meant.
Integrity– being straight with yourself: Sometimes it is the toughest thing you will ever have to do, but it is the foundation of self-expression, power, and a joyous life. As long as you know you are doing the right thing, the world can collapse around you and you will maintain a peace of mind, calmness, and confidence. Integrity is the glue that holds out way of life together. We most constantly strive to keep our integrity intact. It has once been said, “When wealth is lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost, but when a character is lost, ALL is lost.”
Honesty– With integrity comes honesty. Honesty is being true to what you say and giving your word. When you are honest, you build strength of character that will allow you to move throughout life with ease. Honesty is to not be afraid to be serious or be afraid to admit when you are wrong.
Perseverance– While both of these words are powerful, perseverance is what meant the most to me and it is what my dad taught me was the most important without even realizing it. My father was a strong man, both mentally and physically. We all know that my dad was given a death sentence, but it did not keep him from persevering. My dad showed me this through his running and his Ironman races. It was watching him defeat the toughest of physical challenges that I learned his true determination. It is what caused me to start running marathons, conquering triathlons, Ironman, and now Ultra-marathons all while having a lumbar spinal fusion. My first marathon was two years after surgery, my first Ironman was three years after surgery (let alone 2 months of training), and my first Ultra-marathon was four years after surgery. I guess you could say I did not let my medical diagnosis control or end my life. I have followed in my father’s footsteps.