People who know me, know that my mom is a breast cancer survivor. This year will be 6 years strong and cancer free!!! Since her diagnosis my family and I have taken part in the Komen Race for the Cure in Bangor to help raise money to fight the disease. We usually walk and only raise what we have to without asking too many others for donations or sponsors. I've always felt the need to do more, but never did.
Then last October when I got a message from my cousin Mandie asking if I'd be interested in doing the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer, I didn't hesitate. Little did I know what I was actually getting myself into. After looking into the Avon Walk, I saw that instead of a 5K or even a half marathon I would be walking 39 miles. Let me repeat myself incase you didn't hear me...THIRTY.NINE. MILES!!!! Yeah, it's a 2 day walk on May 19th and 20th. On Saturday the 19th we'll be walking 26 miles (a marathon). And on Sunday the 20th, while still feeling very sore from the day before, we have to get up and walk another 13. This takes place in Boston, which was a major seller for me. We have to sleep in a tent, which was NOT a major seller for me. And I have to raise lots of money, like $1,800 worth of money. There's 4 of us in our team, The Holy Walkamoles, so $1,800 times 4? I'll let you do the math.
I'm going to be honest here and say that there were many moments in the beginning that I wanted to change my mind about this. My team and I had Skype meetings and I was so close, at so many of them to say "I'm sorry girls, but I can't do this." It just was getting overwhelming and I hate asking people for money and I wasn't feeling much support from my family as I was telling them that I was going to do this. This was back in December, I had already had a couple of donations come in, but it felt like I had pulled teeth in order to get them.
Then on January 29th we had our kick-off fundraiser. It was a dinner fundraiser at the Oriental Jade. We had sold tickets and practically sold out. As the first sitting was happening and I stood in the doorway, looking around at all of our family, friends and some that we didn't even know there to support us, I knew that I was totally going to do this. People were there because they believed in us and I can't believe I was doubting myself. I had tears in my eyes as Mandie gave a thank you speech and as I looked at my mom sitting in the crowd, holding my daughter, I realized why it was important for me to do this.
As of this week I can happily say, and every time I say it I tear up, that I have surpassed my goal. Yes, with 36 days to spare! I am so overwhelmed with so many emotions with the outpouring support that I've had from so many of my family and friends. I even had one donation from somebody that I didn't even know...Thank you Quality Resurfacing???
Now that the weight of raising the funds are off my shoulders I can truly focus on my training walks. According to Avon's training calendar I should be walking 4 miles every other day and on the weekends I should be up to 10 and 8. The weekends I've been doing great, but during the week I haven't been doing so well.
As this adventure is nearing the finish line, I'm realizing how much I've gotten from it already. I've met new people, lost weight, educated others, and gotten closer to my cousins.
I know I'm going to miss our 10pm Skype dates, our back and forth Facebook chats, spending time with them fundraising and doing training walks and I'm sure by the end of that weekend in May we'll probably be even closer.
Most importantly with my $1800 going towards breast cancer research, who knows, maybe this year will be the year they find that cure. I hated watching what my mom and my sister in law went through when they had Breast Cancer and if I can do something that may prevent someone from that in the future, whether I know them or not, then it's worth the blisters on my feet.
to see our story on WLBZ 2
to see our 5K race story on WLBZ 2
to visit our Avon Page
And we're on Facebook
To visit my personal blog, click here.