Sunday, November 20, 2011

AIM at Melanoma!

Let me begin this post by saying that I will never forget this weekend...ever. It was such a special weekend filled with family, friends, and fellow melanoma warriors. If you were lucky enough to attend the AIM at Melanoma walk in Charlotte this Saturday then I am pretty sure you heard 2 female voices screaming at 8:20 in the morning. No worries....It was just our excitement when we first laid eyes on each other.

Finally! Anne & I meet in person!

I saw Anne before she saw me. I was walking up to the table where she was standing when I saw her begin to look for someone. Then all of a sudden she spotted me and we start screaming and hugging. I had to keep screaming to keep from crying. She is just like I imagined....beautiful & beyond sweet. You would think that there would be awkwardness between us since we've only talked through the internet and phone, but there was none of that. That's how you know you have made a special friend!

Anne organized a great event. Over 200 people registered for the very first AIM at Melanoma walk in Charlotte, NC, and we raised over $33,000. I think it's safe to say that is a great amount for the first year! I fully believe that next year will double this year!

Me with my mom & baby sister!

Aiming for a cure!

One of my best friends drove
from Roanoke for the walk!
 Anne giving the opening ceremony!
 Don't leave your kids
without a parent...
My aunt & cousins walked
with me too!
Just a walking towards a cure!
 Melanoma Survivor...
and STAYING one!
 He ran the last lap for me...
And yes, he was sore after!
 Melanoma hasn't been kind
to our relationship...
but I think it's safe to say,
we are stronger than ever.
 One of my favorite shirts from Saturday:
"Team Lisa. Loving you through it."
(And yes, I teared up when I read it.)
What a great way to honor their friend.
The walk on Saturday was humbling, rewarding, and it made me extremely grateful. We may still be a small group who understands the dangers of "just" skin cancer, but we are a determined group. We will get the word out there. We will put our heart, soul, and sweat into this cancer so that one day if a family finds themselves in our shoes, they will have more options than what we initially had.We will raise awareness so that your future babies do not have their life shattered by "just" skin cancer at age 23 when their biggest worry should be finding themselves. We will raise money so that hopefully one day tanning bed lovers will not die due the dislike of being pale. We may be small, but we are strong. And everyone knows, you don't mess with strong. One day, I fully believe, our cancer will be as well known as breast cancer. Why? It's because of people like us.

Again, a huge thank you to Anne for organizing such a rewarding walk. Your hard work paid off, missy! 33,000 dollars towards a cause that hits so close to home? You made it happen! I am already looking forward to next year.

I will never forget this event.


1 comment:

Anne said...

I am still smiling from meeting you! It meant so much to have you and your family and friends come to Charlotte for the walk. I cried when I saw you because it hit me how far we have come since we first "met". We are no longer frightened gals exchanging emails solely about our fears. We are bad a** Melanoma warriors exchanging emails and messages about our lives. This was just the first of MANY visits, I am sure, and I feel so fortunate to call you a dear friend!