Tie Your Laces and Let’s Go!

28 03 2011
Don, ever my cheerleader and best friend, holding the sign he made for Amy's Walking Angels in 2008. Photo by Amy Rauch Neilson.

Don, ever my cheerleader and best friend, holding the sign he made for Amys Walking Angels in 2008. Photo by Amy Rauch Neilson.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer for the first time on March 3, 2006. And somewhere amid the flurry of tests and results, surgeries and treatments, my friend Mollie Finch pulled off something pretty extraordinary. She organized the very first team of walkers to represent me in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure: Amy’s Walking Angels.

The walk is a 5k, but there’s also a one-mile option for people who can’t go the distance. I thought I’d be one of those people that June day, as I’d started chemo just a week earlier.

My goal was to simply make it to the end of that first mile, Don and all of my teammates by my side, Theo, who was only nine months old, in the stroller.

But somehow, as I approached the one mile marker, I didn’t feel tired. I felt energized. I kept going. And I made it the whole way. I was elated.

There is something so invigorating about being surrounded by people who love you, who are walking in support of you, united in the effort to halt this disease in its tracks.

Mollie’s doing it again — organizing the team for the Amy’s Walking Angels component of the 2011 Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on Saturday, May 21. The walk starts and ends at Comerica Park in downtown Detroit — we meet there round about 8 a.m. and we’re home by Noon. Sometimes, we stop in Mexican Town for lunch afterwards. I’d love to see you out there.

I’m even thinking of printing matching ItsInTheGenes.org T-shirts this year. It’d be a first for our team. If you’re interested in a T-shirt, let me know at amy@itsinthegenes.org and I’ll see what I can organize on my end.

Who knows what we might be celebrating that day? My first post-chemo scan is today at 2:30. Within a few days, I should have the results that tell me how effective the first three rounds of chemo have been. Please pray for something miraculous and completely unexpected — something beyond explanation. I hope my lungs and lymph nodes are completely clear and that my chemo regimen will be shorter than originally anticipated.

On the way home from chemo last Friday, this very subject came up between my friend Diane and I. I said, “Maybe my regimen will be shorter than we think!” And at the very same moment we looked at each other and blurted out, ‘June 1’ as an end-date! It was eerie and funny all at the same time.

As soon as I know my scan results, I’ll let you know. In the meantime, get your racing shoes on!

For more information and/or to sign up to be a part of Amy’s Walking Angels, contact Mollie Finch at molliefinch81@yahoo.com.

Copyright 2011, Amy Rauch Neilson



10 responses

28 03 2011
Debby Neilson

I really want to be one of Amy’s Angels this year. Tonya says “me too”. As for your scan today, my fingers and toes are crossed for good luck. Do you know how hard it is to walk with your toes crossed? Not to mention how funny it looks.

28 03 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

An Angel you will be. Wait a minute, Deb, an Angel you already are! You and Tonya. My angels!
Envisioning you trying to walk like that just made me laugh out loud.
Good thing, because I was getting nervous and searching for my anti-nausea and anti-anxiety meds…so much for courage. I think I need to go look for the Scarecrow. Perhaps we could follow the Yellow Brick Road together.

28 03 2011
Debby Neilson

The yellow brick road it is !!!

28 03 2011
Alice CFW

Hi Amy!

Thinking of you always and praying for a miracle. We are crossing our fingers (and toes too) and hoping for great news. You are so strong and so amazing!
Love you NUG!

28 03 2011
Deborah Ann Peters

I would walk 100 miles for you, if I could. Still praying for your results from todays scan. Miracles happen everyday. Hugs…..

28 03 2011
Melanie Haiken

Fingers and toes crossed, as we say in my family. And how wonderful for you that you have such loyal and organized friends!

29 03 2011

Just so you know, you will see me at the Starting Line . . . I shoot off the pistol to start the race!

29 03 2011
Amy Rauch Neilson

That is sooooooooooooo cool!

29 03 2011
Kris Blake

Hi Honey,
While I cannot be on team Amy on May 21st in MI, I am walking for you, here in Vegas, on May 7th.

1 04 2011
Monica Lesnau

Count us in!

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