Wednesday, 13 May 2015

125. Getting ready for the Moonwalk

Bra Owls, ready for the Moonwalk
Only three days left until the Moonwalk.

A huge thank you to all our donors. We have raised a whopping £3,500 so far. More donations are always welcome of course! You can find our fundraising page HERE.

When I signed up five months ago, shortly after my final chemotherapy session, it was an act of optimism and defiance. I could barely walk a mile and I still had radiotherapy to come, but hey, May was a long time off.

At times, thinking I could walk a half marathon (let alone a full one) seemed deluded. At other times, I thought that I might – just might – make it.

I gathered a team of Night Owls, some equally unsure of their abilities.

The Moonwalk Pack arrived, full of advice and stern warnings about dos and don'ts.

I started training. The longest distance I managed was 16 miles (three weeks ago) and it buoyed me up, but that was after a good long week’s rest in Majorca. Plus, it was daytime.

But since then, confidence and optimism have collapsed again. Yes, I can do stuff, but I still get ridiculously tired and full of aches. That 16 mile walk took a week to recover from. This week I’m recuperating from my three day conference in Copenhagen.

I can do daytimes (mornings, preferably), but NIGHTS?? I haven’t done midnight for over a year. Well past my bedtime. My friends, I fear I shall be floored before we even set off.

Let’s hope my fellow Night Owls and the thousands of other Moonwalkers will lift me up and keep me going.

My husband thinks I’m mad.

My hospital consultant seemed to agre. I told her about my plan seven weeks ago and I could see it in her face: How do I tell this woman that she is mad?

“Hm,” she said carefully. “I had a patient once who wanted to run the marathon. Then she realised that her body simply said told her, hang on a minute, you can’t do this. She had to stop training... All I can say is, just listen to your body and stop if it gets too much.”

I have it in black and white, as they copy you in to their letters.

“I note that she has been exercising regularly,” the consultant wrote to my GP, “and in fact training for a marathon walk (the Moonwalk). I have advised her to continue to exercise, however, extreme training may exacerbating her symptoms [I am still struggling with bone pains] and she may wish to reduce if she is finding that this is the case.”

She may well wish.

In fact, following that 16 mile walk I have stopped training altogether. I realised that the reason I could manage that distance was because I felt so well rested. My preparation for Saturday’s marathon, therefore, will include daytime bed rest.

In the meantime I have been sewing Bra Owls for all my team mates.

The first Bra Owl on the production line

The sewing room. Owl was born here.

Even the most reluctant Wear-A-Bra-In-Public friend is now looking forward to turning up with a suitably decorated cleavage. But I myself will wear just one of these, having only one breast left. On the vacated side I will carry my very own Owl.

Having come through everything this far, we will just have to go the extra mile together.

Now, get as much rest as you can, urged the last-minute email from the Moonwalk organisers. So let me put my feet up and call it Training.

See you on the night. Can't promise I'll be blogging, but I will send you photographic evidence, with or without my medal.

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