Monday, June 9, 2008

Walk for the Cure (Shot through the heart and 50,000 of you're to blame...)

Walking down 7th Street from Gallery Place towards the walk start of the Race for the Cure, I started welling up. My voice caught even when I told myself (I know, I know, muttering while I storm along, not a good sign) I could not cry when I met up with my fellow DC Metro Mom bloggers, some of them for the first time. But somehow, the sight of the chattering groups of really young (early twenties? I am so far away from my teaching days that I can no longer nail the age of babes in the woods on sight) women and men wearing eclectic pink and black outfits as they hoofed it towards the race, just caught me in the heart.

Woman with the pink flip flops and black legwarmers with hot pink satin running shorts? Man with baby-pink cape? Woman with rose-colored feather boa wrapped six times around your neck? I'm so grateful to you for your support of those who have fought breast cancer. I'm so grateful to you for reminding me that doing good doesn't have to be like eating your
broccoli. Holy Bay to Breakers in DC, Batman!

This weekend, thanks to the organizing efforts of a woman who's, oh, eight months pregnant, I witnessed the Race for the Cure for the first time. I didn't run in the 105 degree heat and humidity; a group of us simply meandered and yakked it up for the 3.2 miles. And yes, when the turnoff for the cheater one-mile walk neared, I looked longingly at that hard left towards a frosty bloody mary, but when there's a family of five (one parent holding a needy baby on her hip), aforementioned nearly to-term expecting blogger, and a mother to a 400 degree Ergo-contained, softly sighing,
two month-old humanoid of lava breathing on her chest forging ahead, it's time to keep to the path. Race organizers? You're responsible for the fact that Jess from A Bushel and A Peck's going to get a mister installed in her new backyard pergola. Really! Yup, it felt that good.

We all have women near and dear to us who've battled breast cancer, right? Some multiple times. A and C, I love you. You know I walked for you. And I'm intently interested in the environmental factors that may be implicated in increasing breast cancer risk, so I love the work that Komen's doing on that front. I just didn't know how powerful it would be to see 50,000 other people waving their pink flags of love for their folks. I didn't know they'd have massive teams dedicated to the memory of someone they loved. I didn't know we'd see laminated posters and lanyards with pictures of someone's mom, someone's sister, someone's daughter. Some of them survivors, some of them lost to breast cancer.

If you've never walked (or run! I know some of you can do it!), I encourage you to head down to the Mall next year (or your local race) to check it out and join the throngs.

I've mused before about how lucky I am to be part of such a smart and committed community of online bloggers. Thanks again to the DC Metro Moms and to those who wore their hearts on their sleeves, their feet, and their heads for the cure.



(Loved our time together, Andrea, Julie, Sandie, Devra, Jessica, Robin, Leticia, Jodi, Jean, Nancy aka infant holder extraordinaire, Linda, and Jess -- Sarah! thanks for all the directions when I really needed them, at the bar-- and finally, kudos to Mary, Suzie, and Susan for doing the Sleep for the Cure).

*An actual MamaBird photo original. Not a person in sight I know in the picture but I WAS THERE and I FINISHED that warm trek.

14 comments:

Tech Savvy Mama said...

What a wonderful post to commemorate our great day! I loved the Bay to Breaker-esqueness too and next year I'll bring tissues for both of us since I felt the same way many times during the Race. :)

Urban Mama said...

And thanks to you for holding baby J at brunch, so I could get my blueberry pancakes and one Bloody Mary in! It was great to meet you and walk with you.

Jessica @ A Bushel and a Peck said...

You summed it up perfectly. And I am so not joking about those misters...when they get installed I'll have a DC Metro Moms party and we can hang out under the pergola!

Jessica McFadden said...

Beautiful post! It was a very emotional day, and I'm so glad I had your humor and love and gosh, inspiring stamina in the heat and with the little ones (both on the outside and the inside!) to finish in the sweltering heat with a smile.

jodifur said...

Beautiful post, and I'm so glad I got to experience it with you all. My recap will be up soon!

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

It sounds like it was great--AND for a great cause.

Andrea said...

Great recap, Mama Bird. Summarized how I felt walking for my mom-in-law and my friend Christiane. And I enjoyed meeting you in person!

Stimey said...

This was a great post. It was great to finally meet you.

Oh, Bay to Breakers...I ran that once. It was longer, but it had nothing on last weekend's heat!

katydidnot said...

sounds pretty good.

Minnesota Matron said...

Mama Bird - have you read Our Stolen Future by Theo Colburne? Totally changed my world view with her summary of dioxins and endocrine disrupters. My interest stemmed from my own endocrine issues with two endocrine autoimmune diseases. Not a coincidence that I live in the Great (lead and mercury polluted) Lakes region, thyroid disease capital of the world.

Nancy said...

You captured the event perfectly.

It was so nice to meet you and drink bloody marys with you on Saturday. :-)

Gray Matters said...

Okay - y'all might have to adopt a lonely Baltimore blogger!

Nora Bee said...

Hey, I did that race back when I lived in DC. Congrats!!

ssnowden07 said...

This is a great way to support cancer awareness. You can also send a text message to help fight Breast Cancer. mGive (text) "KOMEN" to 90999 to donate $5 to Susan G. Komen For The Cure! Spread the word!