A couple months ago, I signed up for something crazy. I was asked to participate and blog about my experience with the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk in Atlanta. A friend of mine has walked for at least 10 years and I know it’s been a challenge, but I really had no idea what to expect.
I actually only did the walk on Saturday due to schedule conflicts. ONLY is a strong word because I still logged over 22 miles that day and still was and am in awe of all of the weekend walkers I met.
The walk taught me so much about myself and the journey and I had some thoughts, too (in no particular order).
1. I am waiting in line to start a walk that is 22 miles long. I might be crazy.
But while taking a picture of the line, I will have a little blogger giddiness about the epic charging station!
2. I’m in good shape, why does this hurt so much.
3. 22 miles is a long time to walk and move your body.
4. I am burning so many calories.
5. What the heck are we thinking?
6. Gosh it’s cold out here.
7. Why are my hands numb again?
8. Time for some jazz hands.
9. I never thought my feet would hurt like this.
10. Hallelujah, a break for sitting and snacking and foot wrapping.
11. Snacks. I want all the snacks.
12. HALF WAY THERE!
13. Just keep walking. Just keep walking. Just keep walking.
14. My knees hurt.
15. I can do this.
16. I can’t do this.
17. I will do this.
18. This is for all those that can’t.
19. This is for those in treatment.
20. This is for the survivors.
21. This is for the angels.
22. This is for you.
I met so many amazing men and women on the walk. They were in treatment, survivors and family and friends of angels. They were there to keep their promise.
Many times during the walk, I thought “what the heck was I thinking? Why am I doing this? Why would anybody do this?”
Here’s the thing.
I chose to do this walk. I chose to fundraise (and I met my goal, woot!). I chose to finish the day of walking I started. I chose to push through the pain. I chose to push through the discomfort. I chose to wrap my feet and keep walking. I chose to do this.
Guest what. Those women (and men) that are afflicted by breast cancer?
THEY HAVE NO CHOICE!
They don’t get to choose to have breast cancer. They don’t get to choose to not feel nauseated. They don’t get to choose to not feel terrible. They don’t get to choose to not feel achy. They don’t get to choose to not feel like crap. They don’t get to choose to loose their hair.
THEY CHOOSE TO FIGHT! THEY CHOOSE TO GO THROUGH THE PAIN! THEY CHOOSE TO LIVE!
So, for over 9 hours, I walked. For over 9 hours, I experienced a little pain. For over 9 hours, I talked with people that have endured so much. For over 9 hours, I thought about them. I thought about you.
Breast cancer doesn’t discriminate. Do your self-exams monthly. Get your mammograms. Tell your friends and family to do the same.
I promised and told my friend I would walk in her honor, and I did! She’s just completed her final chemotherapy treatment and has several surgeries and radiation therapy to go.
22 miles of walking is really a walk in the part compared to what she’s gone through and what is still to come. For her, I walk!