Sunday, November 22, 2009

Catrina's 2009 Journey

My Dallas 3-Day 60-mile Journey
It has been a week now since my Dallas 3-Day 60-mile journey and I think my feet are starting to get back to normal. I have to tell you this year was much different from the D.C. 3-Day in 2008. For one, the people of Dallas were truly amazing as they came out in large numbers to not only cheer us on but give us candy bars, lollipops and even homemade cookies. I think my favorite things, as they came at just the right times, were the Krispy Kreme donuts at 8am, the diet coke right after lunch, and the non-watered down Gatorade late in the afternoon.

The other thing that was much different for me this year was the blisters I got on the very first day. My teammate, Tracy, and I decided it would be very cute to wear some pink and black polka dot soccer socks. We were the talk of the day with our pig tales and socks. I mentioned to Tracy around lunchtime that I thought I might be getting blisters but I was too stubborn to actually stop and take my cute socks off. It was a choice that I paid for the next 2 days. The athletic trainer that I saw in the medical tent said it was the worst blister she saw during the Dallas 3-day and had me sign up to be a part of a study on a dressing they were trying for blisters and 3-Day walkers. The pain on day 2 was manageable although not ideal and day 3 had to be the worst but I kept pressing on. By the end of day two I had blisters on the balls of my feet, 3 toes and both heels. Two things kept me going:

1. I thought of my Uncle Tim and what he is going through right now fighting to live one more day. My blisters were nothing compared to that. I felt like my uncle was right there with me as we came across two different groups of firemen along the walk (my uncle gave 29 years of his life to the Wichita Fire department).

2. My teammate, Tracy kept pressing on as if both my feet were 100%. I didn’t really realize it until the walk was over and I talked with her a few days later. She told me she just ignored it because she knew that’s what I wanted her to do. She was so right. She helped me to focus on everything but my feet. Thank you, Tracy, I really needed you.

Tracy and I, despite, my blisters had an amazing adventure: Tracy met some of the ladies I had been training with; my co-workers Kelly as well as the Davis family came out to cheer us on; we were asked at least 5 times if we were twins (really?); Tracy climbed a tree; we showered in semi-truck trailer beds; we visited the medical tent; saw a pink dog with a pink bearded master, a huge pumpkin patch and even Santa Claus; oh and we walked 60 miles in 3 days.

The Dallas 3-Day raised over $7.5 million and had over 3000 walkers of which 300 were men and 400 were breast cancer survivors. Thank you for helping me raise over $8,000 of that total. Together we will find a cure for cancer.

Until next year
Catrina Gibson

October 26, 2009
Less than Two Weeks

In less than two weeks I will be walking 3 days and 60 miles for Breast Cancer. This walk has become even more meaningful to me as I just returned from visiting my uncle whose cancer has recently been diagnosed as terminal. He’s been battling for two years to only have it return with a “vengeance” as he put it. My uncle has been a fireman for over 29 years, putting his life on the line time and time again and now cancer is threatening to take that life from him. He is a shadow of his former self and keeps fighting to live just one more day. His strength inspires me and I wish I could take away his pain and make him healthy again but cancer is one thing I can’t fix by myself (most of you know me and know that I try to fix most everything!). I hold on to my faith and I pray for a miracle. One day with everyone’s help we WILL find a cure.

My teammate, Tracy Wetherbee, from last year has jumped on board and is walking again as well. I’m truly inspired by her as she completed her first marathon yesterday in 4 hours and 7 min. She ran on her mom’s birthday and raised money for lung cancer. It’s the disease that took her mother’s life. In about ten days she will be joining me in Dallas and I can’t wait.

Thank you to all of you that have supported me in prayers, encouragement and donations. We must all take a stand to end this terrible disease.

September 16, 2009
Back to Blogging!

I apologize for not having blogged in about a month but I just hadn’t felt like I had much to say. That has changed as I have several things to update you on. The first thing is that today it has been 9 years since I lost my mom to Ovarian cancer. Cancer still sucks after 9 years. One of my mom’s friends from Syracuse wrote on my facebook page today and she brought back a lot of happy memories that I hadn’t thought about in many many moons. Thank you, Susan!

The next thing is that I have my teammate Tracy signing up (hopefully tonight) and will be walking with me again in Dallas this time! I can’t begin to tell you how happy this makes me. We have so much fun together that I can’t imagine doing it without her. I was going to but I wasn’t real happy about it. Life is so much more fun when you share it with friends. And if you only knew what she was taking on by signing up. I’m guessing you don’t so I’m going to share it. She is running a Marathon on Oct 25 to raise money for Lung Cancer, which took her mother’s life. October 25th is also the day her mom was born. Next, she is going to turn around and two weeks later walk 60 miles in 3 days. I think she’s a glutton for punishment. Either that or she really really wants to find a cure for Cancer! You make the call.

Last of all for tonight, I would like to give a big shout out to the team Pink Soles in Motion. I’ve been doing training walks with them on the weekends and let me tell you they are a wonderful group of ladies (oops..and men!). There are normally about 10-20 of us walking on a given weekend and it sure makes it a lot more fun and interesting to be walking and talking.

They are a team of over 60 ladies that fundraise and participate in the 3-Day. Here is their website if you want to check them out. Pink Soles in Motion

August 3, 2009
Until there is a Cure!

Last year I took a stand against cancer and I had no idea how that choice would affect my life. It started out as a way to honor my mother and raise money for breast cancer but it turned into a life changing cause that I will support Until there is a CURE!

You see, along the way I received emails and spoke with so many family, friends and co-workers that had their own stories about loss, fights and survival that I realized cancer is much bigger than just me and the loss of my mom. I was so touched by the number of people that came forward and told me thank you for what you are doing. My first thought was, “why are they thanking me, I’m just walking?” I finally realized that I was being thanked for allowing others to stand up, honor and fight for their loved ones through me.

This is my 2nd year participating in the Breast Cancer 3-day in which I will walk 60 miles in 3 days. Last year I walked in Washington, DC; this year I will walk in Dallas, Nov. 6-8. You may be thinking, why put yourself through all the months and miles of training, spend all that time fund raising and making all those sacrifices again so that you are prepared for 3 days of walking? I put it all into perspective by thinking about my family, friends, and co-workers that get up each day of their lives and fight through surgery, chemo, and radiation just so they can live and be a part of my life for one more day.

I hope that in my life time I never have to go through what they go through and if I can give a little bit of effort, time, and money into making sure they have one more day to live then I will continue to stand up and do my part.

Please stand up with me to honor and fight for those you know and love Until there is a CURE!

August 2, 2009
My first training walk with other people!!

This morning I attended my first ever training walk. It was nice to actually walk with other people:) Most of the ladies in the group were from the team "Pink Soles in Motion." They get together every weekend for the long walks so I will try to join them if I can. It really does make those long walks go by a lot faster. This weekend was just a 6 mile walk. I really don't consider it long until it gets up to 10 miles or more. We got started at 6:15am in the morning but were done in time for church. So far so good.

August 1, 2009
Time To Get Going

I finally signed myself up for the 3-Day walk in Dallas and decided it was time to start training (15 weeks until the walk). I feel like I’m so far ahead of the game since I signed up last year with 8 weeks to train!

I’m so missing my walking mate Tracy. She has chosen to run a marathon for lung cancer this year so I won’t be texting her in NC and walking with her this year. However, we have decided that we can still train at the same time. I can walk while she is out running. I think it will motivate us to get up on those early morning weekends when we have long walks/runs.

I walked my first 3 miles on Tuesday in a new pair of Nike shoes and I just don’t think Nike is for me. I think I already messed up my toe nail:( I’m going back to my reliable and trust worthy New Balance. I receive an email each week from the 3-Day that suggests a training schedule for the week so I’ll probably follow it fairly close but not like I did last year. Having never walked before, Tracy and I followed it to the letter last year which was probably pretty smart as we both did awesome during the actual walk. This year now that I’m experienced (?!?!) I’m not feeling like I need to follow it as close but we shall see. I’m one of those kind of people that tends to go by the book and if it tells me I should do something I will probably feel like I failed if I don’t do what it says.

I walked 3.85 miles on Thursday and I’m feeling great. Now that I’ve done this before my mind set is so different. For me anything under 10 miles is an easy day. I found an organized training walk that I’m going to do on Sunday morning with a team called “Pink soles in motion”. This will be a new thing for me this year. I will be walking with and meeting other people that are walking in Dallas. It starts at 6:15am so I will be done in time for church:)

June 13, 2009

Yard Sale benefiting Breast Cancer 3-Day

In 2008, with the help of family, friends and co-workers, I was able to raise $8,635 for Breast Cancer. In 2009, I have set a goal to raise $10,000 as I participate once again in the Breast Cancer 3-Day.

In reaching that goal I started thinking of fundraising ideas and came up with the idea to have a garage sale. I asked family, friends and co-workers to donate items they wanted/needed to get rid of to my sale. They sure came through as I had so much stuff!

I enlisted the help of my dad, aunt and friend Debbie to assist me on the big day. My dad and I were up at 6:00am and before we could even get the first table out someone came to shop. The Texas sun arrived early as well and by the time we closed down at about 12:30pm the heat had us rushing to get indoors. We loaded everything up that didn’t sell and donated it to Goodwill.

I was hoping that the sale would make more money than it did but I did raise $443 which is more than what I had to start with. Only $9,557 more to go!