In a very bright, pink email, from Komen Kansas City Race for the Cure, the invitation arrived today:
“So today’s Survivor Challenge is simple: Tell us your survivor story! Share with us your battle and your journey!”
And really, why would I stop talking NOW, right? I shared the story of this day:
Almost one year ago. . .
One year ago, I was in a wheelchair. The pain in my feet and legs, from the chemo-induced neuropathy, was debilitating. I could only stand for a few minutes and walking was almost out of the question. I was weak, frail and exhausted. I had just finished eight rounds of chemo and was trying to recover for my upcoming surgery. And, for some reason, I signed up for the Susan G Komen walk.
I certainly hadn’t planned on participating in the 5k. I had hoped, however, that I could maybe muster the strength to at least complete the shorter, 1 mile walk. We got there early, my DH, Mom and I. We looked at the displays, picked-up swag from the vendors’ tables and happened upon the Survivor’s Pavilion. I saw it all from my wheelchair. Why did I venture out while so weak? Why didn’t I just stay home and rest?
It was time to start the walk and my dear, supportive husband asked if I wanted to try walking or did I need a push? I just remember thinking, that even getting to the starting line seemed too big to hope for. With Mom at my side and occasionally holding my hand, he pushed. . .up a hill, around the corner, down the street, was able to get up at one point and walk a few minutes, but it wasn’t long before I was out of breath and grasping for the chair again. Then I saw it. . .
This is how close we were to the finish line when I told DH that I was going to cross the finish line on my own two feet. He locked the wheels and helped me up. . .everyone around us watched and cheered me on as I crossed in my own strength. I turned and said, to whomever would listen, “next year, I will RUN this 5k.”
So, here we are now. It’s a year later and I can’t believe I’m halfway through my training with WildFIT and preparing for August 12th. This year I WILL run the 5K . . .I’m so excited, every time I lace up my shoes and go for a run. The anticipation of that moment, when I cross the finish line, is with me every day. In just a few weeks, I’ll be crossing the finish line on my own two feet again. But this time, when I turn to look back, I’ll be looking back over the entire year of finish lines that have been crossed. I suppose I’ll have to dream new dreams now. . .much bigger dreams.
After all. . .I have a whole lot of life ahead of me now. . .