Saturday, March 15, 2008
Limping for Laurie
Wow! What a day it was! It was my first ever time participating in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure for Breast Cancer. The day started really early - I was at our team leader's house at 6:40 am so we could get to the Rose Bowl by 7:30. We met up with the other members of the Limpin' for Laurie Team - 19 adults and 2 small children! - and immediately started hitting all the info booths gathering much free pink merchandise. The local Oldie Goldie radio station was entertaining the crowd while we waited for the opening ceremony to honor the survivors. As all those women and 2 men paraded past the other thousands of us waiting to walk there was cheering and applause. A large group of young women from Zeta Tau Alpha sorority seemed to be everywhere, acting as cheerleaders for the walkers, carrying pink banners to escort the survivors, handing out bottles of water and generally making themselves invaluable. Two of my favorite personalities from CBS news were there to make introductions and start us off.
It seemed like we were there forever before we actually began to walk, but once we did all the waiting around didn't matter anymore. The Zeta Tau Alphas were stationed along the route to cheer us on, high fiving everyone who came within reach. Our group of 19 got split up somehow but the road was so filled with walkers that there was no stopping and waiting or turning around! We all kept encouraging each other to keep going and reminding each other why we were walking. OK, it was only 5K but I don't walk. I have bad feet and even standing long enough to preach hurts, but somehow walking with all those people for such a good reason energized me and made me more determined to make it the whole way.
When we reached the end there were crowds of people cheering and taking our pictures. It was good to feel important, but we all knew who the really important people were. They were Laurie, and Allyson, and Katherine, and Gayle, and Stasi and all the other survivors and victims of breast cancer. They were the reason we were there. And they're the reason I'll be there again next year.