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Monday, September 18, 2006

A2D Walk - Day Two

The walk began at 7:30 and the crew started out together. I knew they were sore from the day before so I hoped we would be able to stay together. Much to my regret, though, they had way more spunk in them than me. Erin stayed behind with me for a while, but I could tell she wanted to take off... I told her to go on ahead... I didn't see her, or the other girls, until the day was finished.

I noticed a couple of ladies walking the same pace as me. I stayed behind them for a few yards and then went up to them and introduced myself. They were Lauren and Shayla and this was their first time - they were also one day walkers. I asked them if I could join them and they welcomed me with open arms. They were my new crew and we stuck it out the rest of the day.

Shayla is from Atlanta and Lauren is a friend of hers from Nashville. Lauren also was walking with pneumonia! Her personal goal was to make it to the first stop and then take the van back to the hotel. I am proud to say she braved it out for the entire walk! She was a true inspiration to me.

We talked and walked. When we got to hills we would start asking questions of each other to take our minds off the obstacle. We talked about our most embarrassing moments, what we would do if money was no object, and our top 5 hottie list. The miles flew by! We kept asking Lauren how she was feeling and she kept assuring us she was fine. I told her that "Mom mode" had kicked in and I was going to bug the crap out of her... she just laughed.

At one point the organizer of the walk stopped us and said they would be pulling folks off the route. We were at the back of the pack because of our pace, but we really didn't want to give up. We were told that they would take us .5 miles from the finish line so we could walk across it. At that point we were about 9 miles in... Lauren got pi$$ed that we wouldn't be able to finish it all. In that moment I could not have been more proud of her. She was feeling so bad because of the pneumonia and yet she didn't want to give up. Shayla and I made the decision to end it and take them up on their offer.

I'm glad we did, too. The final hill would have done Lauren in. Plus if we had waited until they pulled all the walkers, they would have taken us straight to the hotel; no finish line walk for us.

As we got to the line we all broke down. My mom, step-dad and kids were all there waiting for me. The minute I saw them I couldn't help the tears. I may have only done 22.5 miles, but it was something I never imagined I would do in the first place.

After a day of reflection I have to admit I am damn proud of what I did. No, I didn't make it 30 miles -- but I helped the organization raise over $1 million dollars for breast cancer research. This walk may have prompted a woman to do a self breast exam - and she found a lump. Someone else may finally go get a mammogram and their life is saved because of it.

I walked 22.5 miles for my mom and grandmother... I walked across that finish line!

I have pictures but - wouldn't you know it - Blogger will not let me upload them. I'll try again tomorrow!

Random thoughts on day two
  • Going down hill is much harder than going up. I discovered muscles I never knew I had once we started walking down those hills.
  • To the ladies in Norcross standing in your front yard wearing the pink feather boas and drinking champagne -- can I come back to your beautiful home and party with you? You were having SO much fun!
  • Poweraide is so good when you are sweaty!
  • Thank you to the bicycle crew - you guys had the hardest jobs! You had to ride the route back and forth - up and down hills - just to keep us crazy folks on the right path. You got a major workout!
  • I want to be on the motorcycle crew
  • I can't wait until next year... I hope my cousins and my mom are ready to go!
  • I will definately participate in the "training walks" that are provided by the A2D organization next year.
  • My math may be off in these posts - but the 22.5 is the final total...


Old Lady said...

Wow, you had yourself a memorable week end. I enjoyed the read.

Marni said...

thank you. It was truly an experience I will never forget.

ziggystardust73 said...

congratulations, Marni!

That is so brilliant.

Erin said...

I am quite impressed! Well done!

Beth said...

I'm there next year. We'll start meeting for regular walks in the spring ... and we'll kick walking a** ... for your mama, my sister-in-law, your grandmother, my great-aunt ...

Writeprocrastinator said...

A big congrats!

Ann said...

Sorry I'm kinda late commenting on this but you did fantastic. Sounds like you had alot of fun too. You've inspired me. I may just do the walk in D.C. next year. I'm turning 40 next year and the walk there is only a bit over a month after my birthday, so it seems like a great way to mark the occasion. I can ask friends and family to support my walk in lieu of gifts.