An amazing experience, one that shouldn’t be taken for granted, an experience with a purpose. The Avon Breast Cancer walk was nothing short of inspirational. Thousands of people raised over $11 million dollars through the New York walk alone. People of different shapes, sizes, genders, sexualities bonded together for one goal; to walk almost 40 miles in 2 days which included a series of blisters on our feet, sore hips, thighs, hamstrings, knees and feet from walking in the rain, sun, wind over bridges, hills and boroughs. I was on my friend Nicole’s team with 7 other walking ladies (including Daine who is 4 months preggers!!). My favorite quote happened while I was eves-dropping on others conversations between zoning out, was between 2 women walkers:
Woman 1: How you doing?
Woman 2: It’s not about me today.
We had station “pit” stops every few miles with loads of snacks, water, Gatorade, port-o-potties and cheerers. The cheerers really got us going especially during the quite walk times. I got kinda bonkers during the last 10 miles of our walk and started making up songs and raps about our walk, along with well known hits like: Threes Company theme song, Facts of Life theme song, Greatest Love of All, Muppets theme song, Andy Griffin theme song, Whistle While You Work, Somewhere over the Rainbow… After mile 27, we camped together on Randall Island in tents that we had to put up, with the help of some nice boy scouts. There were semis filled with showers to clean ourselves up in with rows of chairs for us to scoot in line. I met a woman in her mid-20s who trained in the gym everyday and had run marathons. She said this was the hardest walk she had ever done. Me, and other women around her, agreed in awe as we compared blisters on our feet. Down from our tents they had set up tents for us for massage, podiatry, medical, chiropractor and physical therapy. The massage appointments filled up quick, I missed that, so I went over to the podiatrist tent. I met a woman wearing a pink fishing hat with many ribbons and walk pins who had done this walk for 5 years. She talked about how she always lost toenails every year, this was the first time she ever had a blister. After having my blisters drained and padded, I headed over to the medical tent to have my knees iced. I was nothin’ compared to the 5-7 people who were hooked up to IVs due to dehydration. After my treatments, I headed back to the tent and cuddled up in my space-like mylar foil blanket and passed out under my tent with my pal Michelle.
I woke up to the HARD rain hitting our tent at 6am. Michelle took control of the tent duties while I cleaned up. We ran to our food, drinks, and sloshed into the food tent. People were ripping off the pink tablecloths to make raincoats for the walk. Luckily Michelle brought extras, so I was good to go. We merrily went into the rain and thankfully it cleared up within a half n’ hour of our walk. 13 miles was going to be nothing after our day of 27. There were more bonding chat walks and eves-dropping of amazing survivor stories. We all ended the walk back at 43rd street with a welcome of friends, family, strangers, and Cheer New York (yes, of course I got info from them—I was only a cheerleader of 13 years).
Thank you AGAIN for all the donations! The set the standard high to meet a minimum of $1500, I was able to raise a little over $2500! Wow!
Thank you Nicole for letting me join your awesome group. I loved meeting everyone (I already love Michelle though, so she doesn’t count, HA! Squish).
Yes, I will most likely do this walk again in a few years. I’d like to mix up the causes I walk/run/bike for, that’ll be my goal.
Thank you Avon and all their supporters. It was a great experience I’ll never forget. Also, Avon has set up another research foundation called Army of Women to find the cure to Prevent cancer from even Starting! Please sign up or spread the news. As a volunteer, they will send you emails about research that you can choose to participate in: www.armyofwomen.org