Monday, February 20, 2012

3-day for the Cure: Day Three

It's here.
The day we've all been waiting for.
Day Three!
The final day of our three-day journey.

Mom and I woke up at 5am (well, we woke up lots of times, but officially at 5) to start getting ready.
We weren't gonna miss leaving with our group this morning!
Not to mention having to pack all our stuff, including our tent.
Thank goodness for my heroic stepdad who swooped in to save the day and take our stuff home.
[there was no way all our stuff was getting back into those little duffel bags, which Steve and J zipped in the first place for us]

We love Steve!

Team Supergirls! Even though we hardly got to walk with them, we really liked them.
They welcomed us onto their team so quickly and so last-minute.

On our way!!

It rained for about an hour or two right towards the beginning... which might have been one of the funnest parts. The speed and swiftness with which each walker pulled out their pancho and put it on while still walking was amazing. Everyone had their pancho on in a matter of 5 minutes. It took me a little longer... turns out panchos are a little confusing! :) Thank goodness for mom to help me!

 Smile Guy and Little Grin -- our favorite cheer team and so faithful to come out, even in the rain.

Before we knew it, the rain stopped and we found ourselves on the highway walking over Mission Bay.

Not only did we walk 60 miles, we carried about 20 pounds of stuff each!
But we loved our packs. They saved us more than once!

Months before the walk, we dreamed of stopping at Starbucks along the route and taking our drinks to go. Well, we never passed a Starbucks. [can you believe it?!?!] But... once we headed into Downtown, we found ourselves a Pete's. Which is so much better! We were so happy!

We tracked down our buddy Mike for a photo towards the end of the walk. We met him on one of our training walks and he was such a cheerleader for us through training and the whole walk. He was a part of the crew. Crew rocked!

Our favorite lady Harley rider / traffic girl / crew member. She would sing to us with her radio blasting all throughout the three days. She happened to get to direct one of our last intersections to cross. Mom and I want to be like her when we grow up. :)

Three days...
60 miles...
Our first photo after we crossed the finish line :)

After we all got to Petco Park, the walkers spent a little time together. 
Then we lined up to begin the march to the closing ceremony. 
That was an amazing walk.
All of the incredible police officers were there cheering.

Thousands of people completed this walk together. And we got to stand with our fellow walkers and family and friends and celebrate life and an incredible accomplishment. 
 One 3-day tradition is when the Breast Cancer survivors walk in, we all lift our shoes in the air. It truly was amazing to see thousands of people lifting their shoes together. [it sounds funny, but trust me, it was cool]

Me and my incredible teammate/mom.

We made one friend, Leti, who was the sweetest most free-spirited girl. We loved getting to know her. She signed up to walk by herself, so it was fun that we met each other because it meant she wasn't alone.

A few of our favorite San Jose cops

And... family time! My sister was the best cheerleader we could have asked for.

 She even made a personalized shirt for us!                                                        

 Family photo. I am so thankful for my family and how supportive they were to us.

So, what did we learn?

- every day is a treasure. rejoice in each day. for we are not guaranteed tomorrow.
- cancer is real. cancer kills, and yet cancer brings new life, new perspectives, and renewed appreciation for the moments and the people that make up the moments.
- pain is pain is pain. people feel pain in all kinds of ways. and yet although it is different, it is somehow the same.
- i have the best mom ever. she inspires me, she encourages me, she motivates me, she listens to me [talk for hours!], and she loves me no matter what. i am so blessed. and we never run out of things to talk about.
- people are often a lot nicer than they appear.
- one person can make a difference. and one+one+one+thousands make a huge difference. being a part of that is incredible.
- walking 60 miles is not easy. sleeping in tents is not easy. raising $2300+ is not easy. going through cancer is not easy. but it's not supposed to be. and i think there's more to be said about the journey then how easy it was to get to the destination.
- i am so thankful i get to spend eternity with Jesus. i want everyone to know Jesus like we do.

I probably won't be walking this year. :)
But I am so thankful I walked the 2011 San Diego 3-Day for the Cure.
It was a once in a lifetime experience.

If you haven't stepped out of your comfort zone to try something that seems impossible, or at least really hard, I encourage you to step out and try it. Whatever it may be. The journey is worth it.

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