One thing I love about working at our agency VPE Public Relations, is all the fun things we get to do as an office. Sure the Christmas parties and summer picnics are great but I am most proud of an event that we’ve participated in for the last two years, Susan G. Komen’s Race for the Cure in Los Angeles. In addition to this, we started our annual Spring Into Shape challenge where we are awarded points for exercising and a weight loss competition for those interested in dropping a few pounds. Yesterday some of us decided to start going to the Rose Bowl once a week to earn some points for the challenge but also to help us prepare for Race for the Cure coming up on March 6th at Dodger Stadium.
Race for the Cure 2010
Each year, we see the incredible creativity that many of the participants put in for Race for the Cure: sparkly t-shirts , their team name and even the accessories they sport on the day of the race—anything from pink wigs to pink boas, the official color of breast cancer awareness. It’s these little elements that make Race for the Cure LA a fun event and capture the essence of what this race is about—a celebration of life for survivors, a day to remember the people we’ve lost, and motivation for us to continue to spread the message about the importance breast cancer research and also taking an active role in our own breast health through their I AM THE CURE program.
This year we wanted to be just as fun and creative so we came up with LOS BOOBIES for our team name inspired by Los Bukis, a Mexican band of the 80’s and 90’s that many of our staff members are fans of. We really liked their logo and thought it would make for a great shirt come race day! Although the name itself might be a bit funny, the cause and the mission of Susan G. Komen is something I know many of us take seriously.
Breast cancer has claimed the lives of some of my friends' and co-workers' relatives as well as my own family members’. It has affected some of my closest friends whom are survivors themselves or have survivors in their family. The two family members we lost, I will admit, I was not that close to. The first was my stepdad’s mom who passed away when I was fairly young; when his father remarried, his second wife also passed away from breast cancer.
I don’t remember too much about the time my stepdad lost his mom, but I remember a conversation I had with him after her death. As a little girl, I didn’t know what to say. All I could think was, “I’m sorry for your loss.” He replied angrily, “That’s something you say to a stranger.” OUCH! It really stung and to this day, I am really cautious about what I say to people when they lose someone. I don’t blame my stepdad for having said this. As you get older you learn a little bit more about dealing with these types of things that happen in life but no matter what age, be it 10 or 28 death is still never easy to deal with. What do you tell someone who’s lost a family member especially something like breast cancer? No words can ever make the person feel better but in some way, on this one day that we unite to walk or run our 3.1 miles around Dodger Stadium, it feels like we’ve said it all.
I am happy to be part Race for the Cure LA this year and especially proud to work at an agency that encourages giving back in such an impactful way. As an avid runner/half-marathoner, the 3.1 miles will be a breeze but rest assured I will think of the battles many of these woman AND men have overcome or those who weren’t as fortunate. Although I hate to even think about it, I can’t help but wonder what if my mom or grandmas are diagnosed…what if it’s me? That is why we must participate in things like Susan G. Komen’s Race for the Cure and organizations like Team In Training…to help find a cure for our generation and generations to come.
To put things in perspective, I copied an e-mail sent to me from the Susan G. Komen organization reminding us why we do this:
We run for the 100 women who will be diagnosed this week in our county and 100 next week and the week after that.
We run for the 22 women who will die from breast cancer this week and each week after.
We run for the survivors who come to celebrate their lives and for the new survivors who will come next year.
We run for our sisters, our mothers, our daughters, our grandchildren.
We run for a cure knowing that breast cancer is no longer a death sentence.
We run for the day that breast cancer is no more!
I encourage everyone to get involved by either joining our agency’s team, forming one of your own, or donating! According to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, we’re just 3 years from finding a cure to cancer. Participating in these events help us get one step closer. If you’d like to join our team, just look for Los Boobies!