Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Princess Guide: Walking 60 vs. Owning 60

From my Precious Friend, Kayren. Sister of my Heart:

What does that T-shirt say... “If it’s crazy to walk 60 miles to find a cure for Breast Cancer, I don’t want to be normal?”

I say we should have a shirt that takes it a step farther to say, “If it is crazy to raise $2300.00 to have the privilege of walking 60 miles to find a cure for Breast Cancer I don’t want to be normal!”

Seriously for me the scariest part about this whole crazy pink boa, tiara, pom pom, porta potty, pink tent, Save the Boobies 3-Day thing that we love so much, and has become a part of some of our souls, is the fundraising aspect of it.

You see, I am by nature a people person, so I can do the dress up, get out there, walk and talk for 60 miles. I have a blast doing that!

I love to talk... would talk to anyone and everyone who would listen to me about how strongly I feel about conquering this disease. But, don’t ask me to ask anyone for anything. Don’t ask me to ask anyone for money or to buy something (like tickets to a gala, or the registration fee of a golf tournament, or calendars/cookbooks).

I can’t do it... I freeze up. I get almost there and then boom - I feel this pressure build up inside me, and I can’t. So that first year, I just decided, what I got was what I got and I would self-donate the rest. I had some family members who gave me money, and I had some friends who thought what I was doing was cool, but I just went online and did the whole self-donation thing.

I loved that there was a payment plan... I could self donate over the course of 4 months whatever balance that was left.

So for me when the walk came about I had about $1000.00 still left to raise and that was only $250.00 a month. No problem for me- we were blessed, and I could bless others by walking in their honor/memory (my grandmother and D’Lyn’s mom Sue) and all was right with the world.

D’Lyn said over and over and over- Kayren, just do the walk -- don’t worry about the money. It will come! The more you get into it the easier it gets, and don’t worry!

That first year- I walked that walk- 6 mos after having a baby (Zoe- my only girl- the one with teeny tiny tata’s that might one day hear the words “you have breast cancer” and they would have to take those teeny tiny tatas away).

A few days after the walk, a team member filled that $1000.00 hole. Yes, you read that correctly -- $1000.00!

Even now, I am just speechless when I think about that because it was about allowing me to experience the 3-Day. That is what you do. You don’t just participate, you experience it.

That team member gave her excess to me! I wasn’t the only one she gave to either.

When you hear, "Don’t worry. Commit and the money will come," - take a breath and jump- because my friends it is soooo very worth it!

Now that having been said, I would be remiss if I didn’t tell you “the rest of the story” as Paul Harvey used to say.

I walked the first year- I covered 45 of the 60 on foot - the rest was covered by sweeper van and bus- still covered but on wheels. Remember, I was 6 months out from giving birth and it wasn’t that I was out of shape, it was that my “hoo ha” wasn’t happy about the gravitational pull of 60 miles.

As one very well-seasoned veteran walker told me last year, “The money is there; how you cover the miles doesn’t matter." This was her 8th year to walk/crew and she was trying to cover the walk this year and meet every single sweeper van crew member and every bus driver! I love it!

I was hooked! Hook, line and sinker - I was going to be on this mission to find a cure, to spread the word whatever it took- so my second year I got over myself. I started telling people that I was required to raise $2300.00 for the priviledge to walk beside my teammates and thousands of others walking in honor/memory of the fighters, survivors etc...

Man, it was amazing! Watching my email every day when I got a donation- some days that is the only mail I got in my in box- oh wait who am I kidding! If you were on Team Tiara there was always one from D’Lyn (luv you friend).

Anyway, the little jump in my heart each time I got a donation. They began to add up, and when my father-in-law called and asked how close I was to my goal and I told him, he gave me the last bit.

I felt like I had just won the lottery! No kidding, I had prayed that the Lord would provide and He did- in the way of friends, family, strangers etc... I asked God, He worked through many-the $2300.00 came!

I owned that walk last year- I didn’t have to self-donate, I didn’t have to wait to see the money magically appear thanks to a generous team member with the true team spirit! I owned it, I felt like I had trusted, and asked, and talked, and hugged, and cheered on others, and well, poured my heart and soul into fundraising and it paid off (literally)!

That morning as I stood in the cool weather (holding the “keep going” flag- a whole other post), looking at my teammates, I could smile big and say, “I helped get us here”, “I am a part of something much bigger than myself”, “I am going to stand tall and walk proud for every single person who gave me all of that money!” And folks, I did.

Every step of 60 miles was covered! Sure, I took a sweeper van to pee... once or twice- but I owned every step of that 60 miles! I crossed that finish line into the waiting arms of my teammates and held my head high because I owned the money that came through.

So what is next for me? What is next for you? Maybe you have been the recipient of a “pay it forward” year. My first year was a “pay it forward” year... someone paid their extra forward to me. Maybe you have had your “own it” year or years, and you completely understand how amazing it feels to own your fundraising and your walking etc...

But have I mentioned that it is not about you or me? It is about those hearts whose ears have heard the words breast cancer spoken to them. It is about the ones that are wearing the pink shirts that are on our team. It is about the people who are in the memory tent taking a moment to remember that this disease took their loved ones from them.

Now it is time to pay it forward- so this year and for as many as I can from now on I will make it a “pay it forward year” for anybody that I can. I will still self-donate and trust in God that the money will come! My God is amazing! He has the power that can move mountains, and so I choose from now on to own every walk from here on out and never let one single person/teammate miss out on the opportunity to experience this whole “crazy”, life changing experience known as The Breast Cancer 3-Day!

In Him,
Kayren Babcock

Breast Cancer 3-Day
Team Tiara

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