Saturday, July 29, 2006

First 20 mile walk!

Today I walked 20.16 miles around West Seattle with a group of women all training for the 3-Day. Some were from my team, and others were from "Hiking for Hooters," and their team captain, Alex, organized and led the walk. I feel great - 7 hours of walking and I could have kept going, so that is a very good sign!

Alex gave me a special gift today. She told me that when we met at the FOCUS meeting for the first time, and I shared my story a bit (along with my reason for walking - my daughter: it's okay for me to do this, but NOT TESSA!), she said she felt very inspired and that she has been walking in my honor, and that she used my story in her fundraising letter. Alex has recruited 16 people to her team, and they've raised over $30,000 so far. I am deeply touched and grateful that I had a small part in this success. Alex has done the work, but I feel that my meaningless, awful cancer and treatment are more meaningful knowing that it has touched someone in this way.

Thank you, Alex.


Friday, July 28, 2006

Much to think about

I haven't been posting here often because I am overwhelmed by trying to live my "real" and intended life, and I find myself running all over the place, very scattered, as I try to squeeze every drop out of living. It's an interesting dilemma: I am more determined than ever to live consciously, making all of my actions meaningful...but at the same time, I'm too busy living to find real balance or to sit back and reflect upon my experiences. I will get there, but not yet.

An update on my neighbor: she is a strong woman...would you believe that she actually brought us dinner this weekend (delicious Cajun BBQ pork)? She has a hard road ahead of her, and I hope to help her sometimes, and to be a shoulder for her to lean on... but I also have come to the realization that I can not immerse myself in her problems right now, because I simply do not have the energy to give. My strength comes from a deep well, but this is larger than I can handle, and I have backed off somewhat, and I'm not involved in her day-to-day treatment. I plan to call Mira soon, when I've caught my breath, but her diagnosis hit me harder than I would have imagined possible (after all, we don't know each other well) and I need to sort out my own head before I can help her further with hers.

I hate this disease.

In other ramblings...
I did my first 15+ mile training walk last weekend, and it went really well...I didn't even hurt the next day! Tomorrow I plan another, similarly distanced, walk, and I'm looking forward to it. The 3-Day is just weeks away (Aug. 25-27) and I'm really excited for it. I'm also going to be glad when it's over, because I've decided I'm not a's too inefficient for me! When I'm burning calories, I want to burn them faster. :-) I'm thinking of doing a 1/2 marathon next, but not as a fundraiser.

In fundraising/cancer awareness and prevention news, I'm pleased to say that my team has hit $22K in fundraising. HURRAH! Every dime helps. It might not help myself, Susan, Gretchen, Prema, Nicole, Jodi, Mira, or I....but it WILL help our daughters. I am convinced of this, and it drives me to keep working at it. To that end, Ryan and I intend to attend the Austin, TX Livestrong Summit in October, so that we can be trained as leaders and advocates for the cancer survivorship community. We must end this **** disease, and I mean business when I say that.

Tessa continues to delight me, and to amaze me with her "big girl" ways. She plays beautifully with other children, and is getting quite good at sharing and playing imaginatively with others. I love to watch her when she thinks I'm not around, to see how she interacts with another child, and to hear the stories they dream up together. These are good, good days.

Shep is a Wonderdog, and we're all more in love than ever. He follows me around, which amuses me, and he's getting our family out on walks (good boy!).

We are nearing the completion of a (for us) major house project: a new deck! As I type, my friend Kathleen and her friend Rob are putting up railings on our new deck, and I'm THRILLED with it, because I think it's beautiful. The rest of the summer will be spent enjoying it, and it should be around for MANY years to come. The old deck was rotten and ugly, and this new one, in addition to being safe (a major concern, and the driving factor in our replacement of the old deck) it's really pretty, and I'm a happy girl.


Sunday, July 23, 2006

Send me a letter!

Apparently, I can get letters at the 3-Day event. I would love to hear from you...even though the concept is a bit odd to me! Here's the instructions on how to send me a letter that I will receive on the Breast Cancer 3-Day:

Camp Post Office
Everyone loves to get mail - especially when it's a personal note from a friend or loved one. Let your friends and family know that they can send you personal greetings while you are on the Breast Cancer 3-Day. Ask them to mail their letters of encouragement to:

3-Day Camp Post Office - Seattle, WA
Attn: Kristina Surface
1200 W. 35th Ave Suite #360
Chicago, IL 60609

Your letters will be available for pick-up on-event at the 3-Day Camp Post Office, along with the letters you wrote to yourself at the 3-Day Kick-Off and Expo. The Camp Post Office is also where you can write and send free postcards to your friends, family and donors. Don't forget to bring their addresses with you to the event.

Important Notes:

All letters must be postmarked no later than 2 weeks out from the event.
The 3-Day location (city/state) and the participant name MUST be clearly marked in the address
No boxes/packages; envelopes only!
Letters will not be mailed to participants after the event. Any unclaimed letters will be disposed of.