It was like a wedding. Or Christmas. Or a big vacation.
So much preparation. So many dollars spent. So much focussed energy and singleminded direction filled with excitement & anticipation and sprinkled with stress. And in 24 hours... poof, it's all over.
Ahhhh, Relay for Life.
About Monday or Tuesday I thought, "Wouldn't it be cool if Brandi and Kore surprised me and came up for the weekend." I didn't tell anyone my thoughts because I didn't want anyone to think that I expected them to. However I changed the sheets on the spare bed and cleaned the bathtub.
Friday evening I was in the grocery store picking up some last minute items for the weekend and I ran into a friend whose immediate family has been ravished by cancer in the past couple of years. We chatted for a bit and she encouraged me to press on in the battle against cancer, even though she herself didn't have the strength to participate this year.
We talked about the satisfaction you get from being on a team. We talked about the energy it takes to organize a team. As a parting comment I said, "I'm hoping my daughter walks in the back door at 9:30 tonight. That'll re-energize me for the weekend."
"Oh, are you expecting her?"
"No. It's just a little fantasy I have."
At 9:36 there was a knock at my back door. And there stood my beautiful daughter, my amazing mother, my fabulous sister-in-law and my gorgeous niece. And I was immediately pumped for the weekend!
Although this was only our second year of participating in the Canadian Cancer Society's annual fundraising event as the Pink Panters (Not to be confused with Pink Panthers. We are panters, not athletes.) it has quickly become our motto to 'go big or go home'. (The details of which could possibly become another blog.)
Here in Prince George, where it still freezes at night in May, I believe we are the only city in Canada who still holds this as a 24-hour event, rather than the 12 hours most have scaled it back to. And to top it all off, it's always held on the Mother's Day weekend, which I believe is the earliest weekend of the year that any other city holds it. Many are scheduled as late as the end of June.
And as I sit here, my feet aching, my body exhausted and my skin sunburned, I consider how much easier Relay would be if indeed it were only 12 hours and we weren't scraping frost off the lawn chairs at 6am. And then I consider what we are fighting. Cancer. It's never convenient. It's never comfortable. It's never easy.