Tuesday, November 24, 2009

day two - part I: get out the moleskin

Before I dive in to the adventures on our second day of walking, I haven't yet showed you a picture of our camp, have I?


Although the tents were designed for two people, Debbie and I each had our own tents, because our tent mates had opted to stay in a hotel. Which worked out perfectly fine for us since we were both feeling sick and it's nice to blow your nose and cough and moan without having someone a foot away.

Debbie thought ahead and decorated our camping space with this awesome sign that she had made up.


And I decorated our camping space by covering my tent in white doves and pink balloons decorated like breasts that read, "Feel The Boobs!" and "Know The Boobs!"

*** This blog posting is being interrupted for a quick commercial ***

Do you do self breast exams? Because if you don't - you need to start TODAY. While mammograms are important, self exams are even more so. My sister was diagnosed with breast cancer last year - not because it was discovered during her annual mammogram - but because SHE discovered the mass, a week after her mammogram - that detected nothing.

Do your self exams while you are taking a shower. Do them while you are laying down flat. Just do them enough so that you know what YOU feel like and you know if something changes.




*** We now return to our regular scheduled blog posting ***

Once we took off on our walk, we were greeted by mile after mile of well wishers.

There were beautiful ballerinas out cheering for boobies..


There were countless survivors lining the course holding up signs of their thanks...



This survivor, who was dressed as a clown ...


Was married to this 89-year old man who was wearing a kilt and holding a sign that read, "I'M A BREAST MAN!" And while an 89-year old kilt wearing man holding a sign that declares he likes breasts would normally be considered a little creepy, this past weekend - scores of women stood in line to have their picture taken with him and I think he loved every minute of it.


The support that we received from men along this walk was AMAZING.



There is no doubt, the support we received from men was better than the support we received from our bras. OK, so maybe I speak for myself because now that I've weaned Henry, I fall in the itty bitty you-know-what camp.


Not only were there men walking alongside us, like a large team of guys who were "Bustin' Our Balls for Boobs" (three years and counting...)


There were men with pink ribbons painted on their calves, who were completing this walk in memory of their mothers, wives, daughters and sisters.


There were these guys, who had painted every inch of visible skin pink.


There were teenage boys that lined the route holding up signs of support ...


And there was an entire team of walkers, "Team Impact" that was comprised of eleven teenage boys who play on their school's lacrosse team were walking to honor one of the boy's moms who was diagnosed with breast cancer soon after she completed a 3-Day walk, four years ago. (Some of the walkers still haven't reached their fundraising minimums - so if the spirit moves you to donate to this cause, please check out their fundraising page. Click here for more information.)


Isn't that the most incredible thing?

It gives me the chills.

The "Smile Guy" and his little girl, "Grin" were set up at various places along the course handing out smiley face pins and giving us cheers through a megaphone.


And Cookie Monster and Elmo were both along the course route. I'm pretty sure they're of the masculine persuasion. Correct?


Here was the Brown Jeep Guy dressed as an elephant handing out peanuts...


And then he jumped in to his jeep, drove 10 miles, changed his outfit and set up a sign offering free breast exams. Any other day - creepy. But this past weekend - hilarious.


There was this coed cast of characters who had been on the reality television shows, "The Amazing Race" and "Survivor" and although I didn't recognize who any of them were - that didn't stop me from getting my picture taken.


What else did we see along the course?

Well - there was a "Pair Tree."


And cheerleaders...


And adorable little fairies giving out free hugs...


And pink leather clad tutu wearing cross walk patrols that handed out stickers...


And volunteers that handed out beautiful pink gerbera daisies to all of the walkers...


And people who handed out little cups of beer to all the walkers.


And not just any beer - PINK beer.

(I stuck around here for a little while.)


We saw these two adorable children...


And we saw signs made up where the cancer ribbon conveniently replaced any vowel.



All the while, our sea of pink walkers marched and marched and marched, like a line of ants that extended for five miles.


I'm going to stop this post now because you probably need moleskin for your eyes. Once you recover, I'll post more of our story.

Just tell me when you're ready.


  1. Good Grief! Great post. That last picture is amazing!! The amount of people. WOW! Marg.

  2. Thank you so much for walking. Ever since my Mom lost her battle with breast cancer I can't force myself to go to the walks anymore. Thank you.

  3. Ready! btw, you and your friends and everyone else who walked are awesome! thanks so much.

  4. Thank you for sharing your experience! My 31 year old cousin is currently battling Stage IV breast cancer. You are an insparation!

  5. I'm ready =]] Post more!! I don't know that I've ever commented on your blog before Jen, but you are amazing. You are completely inspirational. You make me want to go and walk 60 miles for ANYTHING. Seeing the pictures of the support that you guys got along the way is incredible. Keep doing what you are doing because you are incredible!!

    Now post some more!!!!

  6. Ha! No fear, it's great. It's amazing to see people pitch in to do something so big.

    You have shamed me into doing my self-exam. Do I have to do it if I'm still breastfeeding? I'll google that.

  7. My lower back is aching just reading this post.My lower discs would have ruptured after about 5 miles. Don't know how you completed this. Wait, I do know.....because I think you ARE amazing. Thank you for doing this.


  8. I'm ready! The pictures are amazing........just like you and your amazing team.

  9. More, NOW! I am getting all verklempt.

  10. Looks like a great time. Painful maybe. But so great. It's always looked at the flyers and really wanted to do the 3day. Maybe someday...

  11. Amazing, Jen. Thank you, thank you for spreading the word and for undergoing this amazing journey! My tatas are now wet from my tears:)

  12. It truly is amazing to see these pictures and all the love and support you received. What an inspiration. It certainly looks like it was a life-changing event!

  13. Just awesome. You are just awesome! Ready for more.

  14. Keep the post coming - as a three time walker I always love seeing what other walkers capture in the moment. Keep the boob passion going!

  15. I'm ready....I love following your journey. How amazing you are for doing this!

  16. that really looks and sounds amazing! thank you for describing each picture, with dial up only a few of them will load, I loved the old man and then of course the free breast exams, too funny.

  17. I'm lucky, in that my life, or the lives of my loved ones, has not been affected by cancer. Yet, these posts and pictures have been so overwhelmingly emotional for me. I tear up with each new photo and paragraph. I am so impressed with you and the people in your community. Thank you for all the details and bring on the rest of your inspiring adventure - I could read about it all day. Thank you.

  18. In awe------------still.

    And how did ya'll have all the time to stop for all those pictures and still make it in time?!

  19. A friend pointed me to your story, since I've done a 2-day, 60 km walk (The Weekend to End Breast Cancer, endcancer.ca) three times in Calgary, with my mom, my sister, my fiance, and my (future) mother-in-law. Amazing experience, and seeing your photos is making me tear up again. It's amazing to see the kind of support and encouragement that comes out along the way of such an incredible event.


  20. I loved all the support that came out (although it looks like San Diego is more on top of support!). Love the brown jeep guy... we had someone like that on our route... now that I think about it... I'm going to go back to your pictures and make sure it isn't the same guy!

  21. I'm sure you're directed to millions of links .... but I have to send you this one too. This is my friend Maureen. A breast cancer survivor. She is young, very young. No family history of breast cancer and was lucky enough to find it early. She's trying to start a movement, raise awareness and get people thinking about breast cancer NOW! She's a mother of twins and two singletons. I loved doing the Race for the Cure this year in her "Got Boobs" shirt ... take a look when you have a free minute!
    There is still A LOT to come, but this is just a start. Click on the bottom right "Moe's Story".
    Facebook is actually much more informative.