I'm giving myself the next few weeks to make a decision. I saw the advert on BART this week and it got me thinking...
Should I walk in 2007 or not?
I've done the Avon Breast Cancer Walks before. Back in the day when they were 60 miles long over 3 days, from Santa Clara to the Marina Green in San Francisco. First time in 2001, second time in 2002. I know what I'm getting myself into...
I know what it's like to train. To wear down pair after pair after pair of walking shoes. To walk holes into so many socks, you lose count. To squish your copious boobs into 'sports bras' that are supposed to be comfortable, breathe, and 'move with you'. (That's a load of crap if I ever heard it.) To drag your butt off the couch and get moving when all you want to do is soak your sore and tender tootsies 'cause they need to be 'toughened up'. To make yourself go just one more mile after you've done your miles for the day even though your knees are screaming out for mercy. (Mine are quite vocal, the whiners.) To walk mile after mile alone because you've worn out everyone who said they would walk with you and help you train. To leave parties early and turn down drinks just so you can get up before sunrise hangover free the next morning to get in your first 10 miler since you started training. To push yourself those extra few steps more and then wonder if you are going to make it back home or if you're gonna have to call someone for a ride.
I know what it's like to fear that you will never be ready for the Walk - that you haven't trained nearly enough and that you'll never make it 60 miles.
I know what's it's like to not train because you'd rather spend a few days with your child...and the soreness I experience when I walk again after family time is over. (Time spent with Spencer is worth every ache.)
I know what it's like to ask friends, family, and perfect strangers for money. It sucks.
I know what it's like to start the Avon Walk alone and end it with two new friends.
I know what it's like to walk the Avon Walk with a team.
I know what it's like to walk the first day in the blistering heat. The second day in beautiful weather to be greeted after lunch by the worst bitch of a hill you've ever seen, only to end the day in the cold fog where you can't even see 2 feet in front of you, the third day starting in the cold and fog and ending with sunshine, relief, and thought's of a nice hot bath.
I know what it's like to drink electrolyte replacement drinks until I think I'm gonna puke because they are the nastiest liquids ever. To drink so much water, I think I'm going to float away. To pee so much, I think I just might shrivel up and blow away 'cause there surely can't be any more fluids left in my body. To look upon Port A Potties like they are the best things ever invented and then to loathe them when it's all over. To flush my own toilet a gazillion times when I get home - just because I can.
I know what it's like to shower in a truck trailer with a bunch of other women and not care who sees your love handles and sagging boobs 'cause your so freaking exhausted you just don't care and DAMN that hot water feels SO damn good on all your aches and pains. To scarf down any food put before you because you're just so hungry you don't care if it's vegetarian or not and your lactose intollerance can just kiss your ass. To fall asleep on the hard ground in your tent even though you are not a 'camping' kind of girl because you are just so tired, you would sleep in the Port A Pottie if you had to... To join in on Karaoke Night on Saturday even when you should be asleep because it's so much fun and the folks up there singing their hearts out are really really good and rocking the house down.
I know what it's like to spend most of the night in the medical tent because you almost passed out from exhaustion on your first night of your first walk, into your plate of spaghetti.
I know what it's like to stretch, stretch, and then stretch some more in the hopes that maybe, just maybe, you won't hurt so much when the day is over. To slather goop on your feet, adhere moleskin in strategic places, and do God only knows what else, so maybe this year the blisters won't be so bad.
I know what it's like to push yourself physically to go just one more mile to the next rest stop, just 2 more miles to lunch, just 1/2 mile more 'til you stop for the day when you think you just can't go any more. To keep walking when your body says "No way in hell bitch!", but you're mind says "Piece of cake baby, piece of cake!". To be broken down so far mentally, you become a zombie - that if it wasn't for the line of walkers and the signs with arrows pointing "THIS WAY", God only knows where you'd end up. To cry for the next few miles as you walk and don't know why.
I know what it's like to feel lonely in a sea of walkers, and walk among friends. To be cheered on by someone else's family because they came to cheer on Mom and they just couldn't stop. To hug a perfect stranger and sit with her while she cries her eyes out because she just can't go on and has to take the bus to base camp. To get hugs from a perfect stranger 'cause you just need one and they are more than willing to give you one or two or three. To give hugs to the cops riding bikes and guys riding motorcycles up and down the route because they are looking out for your safety and they are just so cute in their uniforms and leather and you just can't help yourself.
I know what it's like to wonder why the hell did I do this and why the hell am I putting myself through this torture only to see a woman in a wheelchair so weak from chemo she can barely hold up the sign that says "Thank You". To start wondering why again a few miles and a few more blisters later only to see a young mother with 2 small children holding signs that say "My Mom got treatment because of the money you raised and now she's all better."
I know what it's like to cry so many tears - of pain, heartache, joy and more pain - that you think you can't cry any more. Then you do.
I know what it's like to start out with a bang, fizzle out to nothing, then build yourself back up again.
I know what it's like to hurt for two weeks, lose a toenail or two or three, and to walk with a cane because your knee is the size of a honeydew melon.
I know what it's like to feel on top of the world. To feel like you made a difference, not only in someone else's life, but your own. To feel like maybe it wasn't so bad and it was worth everything you put into it because what you got out was even more than you could have imagined. To feel like maybe this crazy woman still has the guts to do it again.
It feels like this. me. here. now. today.
Guess I don't need any more time to think about it. I want to do it again. Time to check out logistics and see if I can pull it off. That might take the few weeks I was going to use to think about walking or not. If I can't pull off the training and the actual walk part, I will raise money, or volunteer to crew or something.
I am going to get my walk on in 2007 and do something besides nothing.