By Emily H.
This is my version of Emeril’s ‟BAM!” I have never loved my kitchen more than I do now! It is wallpapered with cards from friends near and far who are supporting me along my breast cancer journey. It started with the first card I received that reads, ‟Today’s showers bring tomorrow’s blooms.” I taped it right above my kitchen sink, somewhere I visit often, so I would see it over and over again, reminding myself this is only a part of my story. As more and more cards came in the mail I wanted a way to keep all those positive thoughts front and center. Away it grew to my whole kitchen! Words do not do my feelings justice. I have always known I had good friends and family, but when I needed them the most, they all showed up. I am both thankful and very blessed to have a village this strong! It has truly been the difference between surviving and being a Survivor.
Community by definition is a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common. To me, community is an evenly balanced group of people who share passion for the same thing. Our 3-Day community is made of all types of beings (men, women, children, and pets) who share one common goal: to spread the Pink Bubble love. We all come to the table with different goals, some want to raise money, some just want to find a cure, some need support, and some just like to walk. But all in all we are a group of people (a community) that wants the world to be a little more pink. My community support means so much that without it I would fail. I know that no matter what challenge I am faced with I can turn to that community and someone will rise to the occasion and help me succeed.
My 3-Day journey began five years ago when I registered to walk in celebration of my mother-in-law, Lori, who had just fought her own battle with breast cancer. I quickly found a passion for FUN-raising and was able to arrive to camp a Top 10 fundraiser my first year. I fell in love with the ‟Pink Bubble” and all the people who make the 3-Day happen. There were so many stories, so many hugs, and so many reasons to keep coming back. I brought my mother-in-law and sister-in-law, Heather, along with me for walk two and then a best friend, Rachelle, for year three. 2020 was our ‟year off” as I call it, and I was aiming high for 2021. I wanted to reach $20,000 in lifetime donations for my five-year anniversary. And I did!
But as 2021 began I was given a new challenge, being diagnosed with breast cancer myself. My diagnosis came as a huge shock as I do not hit very many risk factors. I am only 29, had all my kids young, breastfed all my babies, no family history, and am generally in good health. But as we all know cancer does not discriminate. One more reason to keep on walking. I look forward to being reunited with my ‟Pink Bubble” family in the future and know that my journey as a survivor is just beginning.
If I could only share one thing with the 3-Day family it would be don’t give up! Keep on fighting, fundraising, and spreading the Pink Bubble love. The past few years have been tough on everyone for different reasons. We all learned things and took the time to grow in personal ways. But overall as a society, I think we discovered we could all use a little work! So don’t give up and keep on fighting, for yourself, your mission, and anything and everything that brings you joy! You all bring me joy and I am so thankful.