We have been doing pink walks for years now. It has always felt like something I could do to honor my mom, an incredible fighter. It’s been about raising awareness. I know we get bombarded with breast cancer especially in October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, but it affects so many people that odds are we all know someone affected by the terrible disease.
One is eight women is diagnosed with breast cancer or at least that is one stat I’ve seen. Years ago when Chris and I saw this stat I was coaching cross country at the time and had 8 runners. This stat hit us, realizing that means one of our runners could fall right into this statistic.
But it’s more than the stats and numbers. Breast cancer is difficult because it affects something that makes us feminine. Many women lose their breasts due to mastectomies and people don’t realize how hard the recovery is not just physically but emotionally from the procedure that removes a part of our sexuality and identity as a woman.
Breast cancer awareness is about showing support for all those who have fought and are fighting against the terrible disease. Chemo and treatment for breast cancer is exhausting but many women get through this difficult stretch and go on to thrive. These walks and events help to recognize all that these amazing women have been through.
We have never formed a team for my mom and this year will just be walking as our family of seven like we did yesterday and again at another walk in a few weeks. We are ok just walking as our own group to honor my mom and now me. I still don’t think much of what I went through, maybe because it’s still too fresh or maybe because I could never pause to realize how challenging a breast cancer diagnosis was with four young children while pregnant with your fifth child. And that’s ok.
It’s not about the size of the team, how much money is raised or how clever your shirt or team name is, those matter but not as much as showing up. Showing support for pink events helps keep breast cancer on people’s minds. Showing up reminds people to keep an eye on their own health and to get screened annually. Showing up helps all those who have fought, those who are fighting had those who will fight feel stronger and better about all they have been through.
And that is why we walk. We started as a team of two with Chris and I and now we are a team of seven, helping to raise breast cancer awareness one step or event at a time.
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