Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Relay for Life!

This past weekend I participated in Relay For Life by leading Team Stupid Cancer.


I had never done a RFL event before so I had no idea what to expect. And it's possible that I wasn't the world's best team captain. But I am so grateful for the friends and family that joined the team. And everyone that stopped by to say "Hello" during the event.

This post would be incredibly long if I wrote about everything, but I just want to include the highlights:

Girl child and some of her friends joined the team! 

Teen boy came to visit and walk some laps with his mom. And he didn't die.

Team Stupid Cancer was AWESOME! We raised over $3,500!

Yeah to Lynn who stayed the entire time with me!

Yeah to Shay who came at 3AM and walked through the early morning hours!

Awesome friends who came and walked an hour here and there, or stayed for awhile and put in MANY laps. Next year, we will track our laps walked better.

The luminaria ceremony was incredible! I wish I'd known just how moving it would be. I would've made sure that my whole team was there to experience it. And my friend Senator Andy Hill was the guest speaker for the ceremony so it felt even more special to me.

There was entertainment throughout the event, including a beauty pageant...where the guys did their best imitation of beauty queens. One of the teens I've known since he was very young participated in the event. It was so much fun to watch!

I felt loved all weekend because friends who were not participating kept stopping by to do a lap to two (or more), bring beverages and snacks, and just say hi and cheer us on. THANK YOU!

My survivor friends were out in force!!! Hooray to all of us! Keep up the fight!

Feeling like you missed out? Oh, you did. But not to worry. I will definitely be doing this again, and my goal is to have a HUGE team next year. You can join us!

Thank you to all of you that donated to the cause!

Saturday, June 7, 2014


Yesterday, I went to see The Fault in our Stars (TFIOS) movie with a friend. The date had been circled on my calendar ever since the movie release date was announced. I am a HUGE fan of John Green (the author of the book which the movie is based on) HUUUUUUGE! As in, I actually have a crush on John Green. I love all his books and read TFIOS long before I was diagnosed with cancer. 

But after my diagnosis, I realized that TFIOS really resonated with me as being honest and real. And so, I forced everyone I knew to read it also. Not because it's a "cancer book" but because it's a story that you can get wrapped up in and relate to, that happens to portray being sick in a pretty accurate light.

I could talk ad nauseum about the book, but I wanted to share my thoughts on the movie watching experience. EVERYONE that went to see it was posting on Facebook about how they CRIED AND CRIED and how sad it was and to bring your Kleenex. And because I am an emotional disaster anyway, I was prepared for a variety of reactions.

But here's the thing that's interesting to me. I didn't cry. I'm not even sure that I teared up. 

Now, don't get me wrong, when I first read the book years ago, I bawled. Because there's just so much to be happy and sad about in that book and when you reach the end, you've become so invested emotionally that there really is no other option.

But I didn't cry during the movie. And while that seems weird to me, it also kinda makes sense. Because I've lived that story now. And I've cried so many tears for myself during the two years I've been fighting and all the treatments that I went through, I guess there's just not a whole lot left.

And while I was scared that I might have a PTSD panic attack seeing the movie visualized, it didn't happen. I was just glad to BE THERE! And watch one of my all-time favorite books become immortalized on film in an incredible way.

Did I mention I love John Green?