Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Stepping out

Tears. Laughter. Rain. Sore feet. And more rain. That was my weekend as I participated in the 60K Weekend to End Breast Cancer Walk.

I first did the walk two years ago and much to everyone’s surprise, including my own, I did it. It was an amazing experience – my family were so proud of me, and so was I .

I was all set to hang up my walking shoes, and stop while I was ahead, when last August, one of our team members died. So Chicks Out Walking was resurrected and we donned our shoes again in memory of Val, and loved ones we had lost to cancer.

Because we had all done the walk before, there wasn’t really the same pressure to succeed. We had determined ahead of time that we would go at our own pace, listen to our bodies and ask for help if we needed it.

While I remembered the feeling of exhilaration on crossing the finish line, what I had forgotten was the sense of celebration as we walked around the city. Many streets were lined with well-wishers, offering us snacks, popsicles, badges, candies to give us the strength and energy to carry on. A group of young people, for example, were serving shots of beer – calling out “over here for your beer.” And young children and dogs alike were dressed up in pink to show support.

The four of us raised $10,600 and while we may feel stiff and ache a bit today, I know we all feel it was worth it. Not just because of the money we raised, or the camaraderie we shared but because we could.

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