The first slap

The first slap
This photo was taken the day after I was diagnosed, and it is my first bitch slap at cancer. I'm the one with the icepack symbolically placed on my boob. My teammates changed our team's uniform to pink at the last minute, and I came off the soccer field that night with one goal and a whole lot of love. Several of these women are my close friends, but they are all warriors, and they all helped me set the tone for this fight.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Relay for Life with a One-Eyed Dammit Doll

As many of you know, I participated in the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life yesterday evening in Champaign. Actually, I didn't walk all night with a team, but I did walk the survivors' lap. Craig and Nate both joined in, walking the caregivers' lap with me after the survivors' lap (Evan was away at a soccer tournament). What an awesome event! It is definitely inspiring to see so many people working so hard to raise money for cancer research and support. I didn't even sign up for the event until last Wednesday. But within only two hours of signing up, friends and family had already donated over $300, and in end, I raised $1,200 (well over my initial goal of $200)! Thank you to all of you who donated or helped spread the word. And for those of you who would like to donate, but either didn't know about this or haven't yet had the chance, you can do so here:

To be honest, Nate was not very excited about being there. He was happy to do it, and understood the significance for me, but there wasn't a whole lot for an 11 year old kid to do there prior to the kick-off of the event at 6:00. Besides, he was missing the England-Italy world cup game! There were a few food vendors, and we could stroll around the tent sites of the different teams. Each team was selling something (typically food) to raise money for the ACS, and we found some cookies and brats to call dinner.

At one point, Nate said, "I wish they sold something other than food. They should be selling little dolls that represent cancer that you can stick needles into or something." I thought it wasn't a bad idea, and sure enough, after walking around a bit more, we came upon a team that was selling "Dammit Dolls." A Dammit Doll is designed to be whacked around while shouting "dammit!" when feeling frustrated or angry. Each one comes with a poem explaining its purpose (see photo lower right). Of course we had to buy one. I picked one with a pink ribbon, and then promptly stuffed in my purse as the survivors' lap was about to begin. And when we pulled it out a bit later, we noted that it was missing an eye. This gave it a sort of rough and tumble look, arguably more appropriate for its intended use (see photo at left)

A particular highlight of the event for me was meeting a woman with a diagnosis virtually identical to mine, but who is a few weeks ahead of me in treatment. I actually recognized her from the chemo suite, and it turns out that our treatments have been identical. I swear, I just gravitated toward her, as I realized that it was the first time I've actually talked with someone going through exactly what I've gone through at the same time. It was incredibly therapeutic to talk with her and to share stories. And what's more, her head hair is beginning to grow back! The only hair I've had growing back so far is my leg hair and my nose hair. I'll take it I guess, but it's not exactly the regrowth I was hoping for at this point.

Anyway, I've posted a couple more photos from Relay for Life below. And here is a link to the Champaign-Urbana's newspaper's online photo gallery from the event, which includes one of me and Nate ringing the Survivor Bell together:

1 comment:

To comment, be sure to select an ID under "comment as." Anonymous works for those who don't want to comment using their Google, Yahoo, or other ID.