Relay is over. Now what?

It has been so busy that I haven't had any time to type. Relay was an amazing success! Our $35000 fundraising goal was blown out of the water....the money tallying is not yet complete by the ACS, but it looks like we might have reached $50000!!!!!! That is so unbelievable to me. I don't think I have quite grasped it yet! Much thanks to the Brunings, the Dominators, my DDS'ers, and team Perseverance!!!! Wow, each year Relay has gotten bigger and bigger! It is such an emotional night to end all the FUN-draising chaos!
During the opening ceremonies we had 11 team members receive $1000+ fundraising t-shirts! How amazing is that! Team Perseverance is made up of ROCKSTARS! Then I got to accept a check for $10000 from WalMart! They helped us SAVE OUR HAIR! How great is that! It was crazy! They gave me one of those huge-mongous checks, like publishers clearinghouse! How fun was that! I cried on the poor man's shoulder! I am sure he was wondering what kind of nut I was. How amazing! That money will help so many people right here in Nebraska!
The luminary ceremony was emotional as always, but I was so busy that I didnt have time to get the luminaries from my parents and my kiddos together and was so worried that I wouldn't get them lit before other people started lighting them. It worked out, but I was tired, and I think it was just all so emotional that I was not handling things very well. Also, this year was extra hard because I just lost Kim this year, our friend Jason started chemo, my friend from work is struggling with her treatments, and my friend Katy just lost her sister in May. We thought Katy's sister would be here this year to walk with us, but I guess a higher power had different plans for her. It was a rough night for her family, and my heart ached for them.
I shared speaking duties with my friend Eric this year in our Fight Back ceremony which was held RIGHT after the luminaries. So, in my emotional state I hear the announcement over the loud speakers that the Fight Back Ceremony would be starting in a matter of minutes, and I just couldn't pull it together that fast. Eric has also been through a lot this year, and adding those emotions to the emotions I was already having just sent me over the edge. I cried through the whole thing! CANCER IS JUST NOT FAIR! The rest of the night I just tried to zone out and when the sun rose in the morning we all headed home and went to bed.
The last few days following Relay have been hard. I found myself sitting in the cemetary crying, and not being able to stop. I had spent the last year speaking at Relay events and the last 6 months fundraising. I did it in all the free time that I had. I wanted to make a difference, and I was working hard at it. Cancer hit my friends over and over throughout the year, and I was doing everything I could do to fight back. But when Relay was all said and done, and the money was turned in, I felt an immense sense of saddness.....all that work and my friends that cancer had taken were still gone, and my sick friends were still sick, and I still had to go to chemo on Monday morning. I should have felt such joy in all that we had accomplished! I should have been excited, but I couldn't help just feeling sad that we still do not have a cure. But I have no doubt that we will be one step closer and that many, many cancer patients will benefit from the many services that the ACS provides. I am trying to focus on that......
What am I thankful for?!
Sunny days, candlelight, and Hope for the future.


Anonymous said...

That is AWESOME! You surely made a difference! We think about you often.
Brian & Lyndsy Schulz

Anonymous said...

WOW amazing -- congrats on not losing your hair!! Sounds like you have accomplished A LOT this past year and I so get the crying in the cemetary done it many time myself..best of luck with this new year to you!!

Stefanie Hamilton said...

Tracy, you did an awesome job at the Relay. I understand your feelings about being overwhelmed - you never get to leave the cancer world. I had to step back from cancer for a little bit, so I stopped all of my volunteer and fundraising stuff, and I skipped a lot of cancer events this summer. I think sometimes you just need a mental break. Best wishes to you.

Bonita said...

You have worked very hard this past year Tracy. Your hard work and dedication to the cause make a difference to so many people. Take care of yourself and keep up the fight. I have so enjoyed watching you and all your accomplishments. It is great to see the Relay For Life in Lincoln still kicking butt, raising awareness and raising money!

Anonymous said...

Hey Tracy! Thanks for a posting! We were hoping to hear how it all played out for you that night. Huge congratulations to you and your team for making, no - beating the tar out of your goal! You inspire us to be better people and to appreciate every single day. What a gift that is! Love ya!
The Brunings
P.S. Jack wants to know if Skye won the Little Miss contest?!

Fischer 4 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fischer 4 said...

Tracy - Having worked with you many many years ago, I was speechless when I recently heard what you were going through. However, your positivity and approach to this horrible disease is truly inspirational. My mother is a breast cancer survivor and my father-in-law is currently winning a battle against leukemia...unfortunately cancer seems to touch us all either directly or indirectly. The fact that you're choosing to actively do something to make a difference and find a cure is inspiring.

Wishing you the best.

Drew Fischer