Back to Relay..
January 10, 2013 § Leave a comment
Tonight Carlton and I are going to our first Relay For Life of Arlington Committee meeting. I am SO excited– this is the first time I’ll have just been on a committee for relay. I’ve been an event chair or an event manager (working for ACS) but never able to just sit on the committee. We are looking forward to getting involved in our community and bringing back our old Strides for Sarah relay team. A little background on why I love Relay..
I left college and my life in DC to undergo chemo and immune therapy in my hometown of Syracuse, NY. It also happened to be winter– extra crappy! I lived at home and attempted to work a part-time job for as long as I could..but after one snowy morning that left me in a snowbank off road ..bald mind you, I decided it would be a much better idea to just stay home. It was, I rested and watched a lot of TV. In fact, I watched the Soprano’s from start to finish during those months. As time has gone by I actually can’t remember much of what I did other than TV, walking my then puppy Chaz and talking on the phone to Carlton. I wasn’t involved with ACS or any other charity..
At the beginning of my last month of chemo my sister Becca called me and said she was doing Relay For Life at her college, St. John Fisher. She also mentioned she was doing a team in my honor. That’s all I knew going into that first Relay. So off to Rochester my Mom, Dad Carlton (he drove in from MD) & I went. When we arrived at the gym where the Relay was held I can remember feeling overwhelmed. There were lots of people waiting in line to check in and none of them looked sick at all. I remember thinking to myself..great another place where I’m the only bald one. We all small talked and after we checked in my Becca told me it was time for me to go the survivors party. “What?! Party?!”. Off I went, I was greeted by a delightful young girl who welcomed me to Relay and gave me a gift of a purple survivor t-shirt and a Relay For Life Nalgene water bottle. “This is pretty cool..” I thought. Next thing I knew I was being shuffled into the gym with the other cancer survivors at the “party”. I listened to the eloquent program about survivorship and cancer prevention. A few people spoke about their experience with cancer. Next we survivors we asked to step onto the track and start the event off with a celebratory lap. The music started and off we went. In that moment I felt *ALIVE* for the first time in the 6 months since cancer had entered my world. The track was surrounded by strangers who were all clapping and cheering us survivors on. I no longer felt *ALONE*. One the second lap our caregivers were encouraged to join us so my Mom, Dad, Becca, Carlton & I walked that lap holding hands. The tears just flooded down my face. This beautiful moment was completely life changing. Relay gave me such a huge gift, the gift of Hope. I wore my survivor t-shirt to my last chemo therapy session and felt like a complete rockstar. I would defeat this disease.
Well I beat cancer, I am one of the lucky ones and this year I heard the word *CURED*. I wanted to Relay again with friends & family to finish the fight against cancer so more and more survivors can hear the same word. I want to give another survivor the feeling I had at that first Relay.
So off we go to our first committee meeting..can’t wait!
If you’d like to join my team or donate please visit:
Until we cure all cancers!
P.S. Whole30 is going awesome..on day 8 and feeling strong. Have had some hives that seem to be related to sulfites. Who knew balsamic vinegar had added sulfites..grhh! I hate allergies!!