Thursday, March 15, 2012

Myths of The 3 Day - Part 1

(First in an "I don't know how many or how often" series of misconceptions about The 3 Day that I've come across while talking to potential walkers & donors)

"I have to walk all 60 miles."

I would LOVE to tell you that I've walked all 60 miles. That I've struggled up that last hill... put on my $2 plastic poncho when the rain starts... danced my way in to camp each evening.

Let's be real. I'm a sweep van fan & I'm not ashamed. (Hey, they usually have candy!)

The first year I walked, I trained to the letter. I followed the 24 week training guide like a Bible. I walked all of Day One. And then, instead of taking a long shower in my own bathroom, eating some homemade food and going to sleep in my comfy bed, I found myself at camp. The shower was good. The food was eh. (To be fair, it ROCKED last year!!) And then I went to sleep in a tent. On the ground. Because I had forgotten an air mattress.

I made it about 5 miles in to Day Two before I ended up on a sweep van. I'd walk a little, then van hop, walk, van, walk... you get the idea. I rode in to camp on a big grey bus.

And I don't feel bad about it at all.

There is no shame in getting on a sweep van. Like I said before, they usually have candy. I like candy. I do not like it when I am unable to regulate my own body temperature and have blisters the size of small children.

On the flip side of all of this, we have one of my teammates. We'll call her Beige. (We all have nicknames.) Beige does not train. Like, at all. And yet each year, she walks all 60 miles with hardly a blister. She then proceeds to go home after the event and run on the treadmill. Yes, we hate her, too. (Not really, Beige, you know it's all love!) Apparently, her body is genetically predisposed to walking 60 miles.

I will say this: When I walk with Beige, I always walk further than I had originally planned or believed I could. She's the only reason I finished all of Day One my first year. And we walked together on all of Day Three last year.

If you're one of the proud full 60 miles walkers, I take my shoe off to you. One of these days, I'll do it.

For my newbies who are scared to death of 60 miles, don't let it stop you. Do what you can. That's really what 3 Day is about: Doing all you can, the best you can. I promise you that you'll get much further than you think.

Monday, February 20, 2012


Sometimes, you have to step back & breathe.

Sometimes, you have to wake up at 5 a.m. in tears.

Sometimes, you have to bitch out loud, even if it's just to your dog.

Sometimes, you have to honestly consider quitting.

Sometimes, you have to remember that what you see as an insult is actually a compliment.

Sometimes, you have to live with silence.

Sometimes, you have to ignore the hurt.

Sometimes, you have to do keep doing what you do, not because it's what you do, but because it's who you are.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My Two Pink Cents

Here's my 2 cents: 75% of the funds raised by each Komen affiliate stay in the area in which they are raised. So if the decision by Komen Nat'l Headquarters to "defund" Planned Parenthood doesn't sit well with you (I'm still not entirely clear on the definition of defunding since I've read that money has not been taken from them & they can reapply at the next grant cycle), check with your local affiliate before making a decision on whether or not to support Komen. Many local affiliates are opposing the decision of Nat'l Headquarters, including all 7 of the California affiliates. Many affiliates have never given grant money to Planned Parenthood because PP has not applied for grant money from them. Furthermore, many affiliates work in conjunction with Planned Parenthood without grant money being involved: They refer individuals to PP and PP, after examination, refers them to organizations that are Komen grantees for further testing, treatment, etc.

Research before you knee jerk. And if after researching you decide to donate elsewhere, make sure you're donating to a legitimate, established charity or organization with a history of doing good work.

Personally, I will continue to fundraise and walk for Komen, because I believe in the bigger cause. Yes, Komen is handling this entire situation with sub-par PR at best... but I don't walk for PR or politics. I walk to find a cure for breast cancer, and I still believe that Komen has done the most work and helped to make the biggest advances in that field.

Friday, September 30, 2011

A Plate Of Spaghetti

I serve food under a bridge to a bunch of homeless people.

Might not be your idea of a perfect Sunday, but it's mine.

Unfortunately, one of my homeless friends, Robert, passed away this week. He was beaten with a rock just feet away from where we serve food. He hung in there for a few days, but it was just too much for him to come back from. There was a memorial service for him today under the bridge... a beautiful prayer and an amazing rendition of 'Amazing Grace'.

I don't know who did it. I don't know why it happened or any of the circumstances surrounding that night. But I'm not dumb. I know that it is highly likely that, on Sunday, I will hand a plate of food to the person who is responsible for Robert's death. I have most likely handed many plates to whomever did this over the past two and a half years. I will most likely continue to smile, call them 'honey' or 'darlin', and ask them if they would like some spaghetti.


Because God told me to serve His children. He didn't tell me to serve all of them except for this one or that one. He didn't tell me to serve them only if they've never committed a crime. He didn't tell me to ask them for their rap sheet before I hand them a plate of food. He told me to serve His children, and He told me to serve them in the place & capacity that I do. I trust Him to take care of the rest.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

3 Day Info

It's almost that time, kids! The Boston 3 Day is upon us! This time next week, I'll be frolicking in Boston, getting ready to walk 60 miles!

Okay, who am I kidding? I ain't walkin' 60 miles. It's been a hell of a year, and I simply have not been able to train the way I wish I could have. But I'm still going to walk as far as I can, I will still sleep in a tent, shower in the back of a semi-trailer, and eat food under a big white tent. I will drink watered down Gatorade, eat PB&J on graham crackers, and use port-a-potties. And I will love every second of it, right down to the blisters on my little toes.

Last year, I didn't know anyone in Boston. This year, I am blessed to have several wonderful friends in the area. You don't know how emotional it is to cross that finish line. I can only imagine how it feels to cross it and have people waiting there for you. I would LOVE to see my Boston Family at the finish line this year! Listed below are all the official cheering stations and the finish line/closing ceremony information. If you decide to be at a cheer station, PLEASE let me know so I can try to drag my feet to it instead of hopping on a sweep van!

Also, thanks to the craziness I call my life, I missed the deadline for having mail sent to camp at The 3 Day. I can say without a doubt that the notes of encouragement I got last year kept me going... and the pictures of Danny Wood included in some of them didn't hurt either. This year, I'll be going the email route. So if you'd like to send me a note to keep me going on The 3 Day, please send it to (I won't be checking this account until I get to camp at the end of Day One).

Friday, July 22
8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
St. Paul's Church
502 Washington Street
Wellesley, MA 02482

12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
DCR Boat Launch
Crescent Street (between Brown & Ash Streets)
Waltham, MA 02453

Saturday, July 23
7:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.
Robins Farm Park
51 Eastern Avenue
Arlington, MA 02476

9:45 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
YMCA - Greater Boston Area: North Suburban Family Branch‎
138 Lexington Street
Woburn, MA 01801

11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Parker Field Playground
81 Worthen Road
Lexington, MA 02420

Sunday, July 24
7:30 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.
Shaw's Supermarket
699 Mount Auburn Street
Cambridge, MA 02138

8:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.
Cambridge City Hall
795 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139

9:15 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Boston Public Garden
Intersection of Commonwealth & Arlington Street (between the statue of George Washington and Swan Boats)
Boston, MA 02127

Sunday, July 24
4:30 p.m.

University of Massachusetts
100 William T. Morrissey Boulevard 
Dorchester, MA 02125

Monday, June 27, 2011

How God Does Kidneys

Jeremiah 1:5 "Before I formed you in your mother's womb, I knew you; before you were born I set you apart."

Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares The Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you hope and a future."

That picture is of my best friend, Bobbette, and her kidney donor, Courtney. It was taken a couple days after we all realized just how firmly in God's hands we were being held.

You see, Courtney lives in my hometown of Slidell, LA. She moved there not to long ago. It's not a big town, nothing really notable about it. She lives less than a mile from my grandparents. Last summer, her sister, Leanne, moved there and began working at First United Methodist Church. I spent the first 18 years of my life being raised in that church.

I randomly sat down a few chairs away from a man in the waiting room on the morning of Bobbette's surgery. He has a bag from the Komen 3 Day in Dallas under his chair. It belonged to his fiancee', who was donating a kidney that day. It was Phillip, Courtney's fiancee'. Courtney is a 3 Day Walker.

Courtney got the blog I wrote last December with the info on getting tested to be Bobbette's donor from Leanne, her sister. Leanne began following me on Twitter last summer because we are both Komen 3 Day Walkers. I walk on Team Betty as part of Remember Betty. We walk in memory of Betty Wood, mother of Danny Wood from the New Kids On The Block. There are dedication plaques on the doors of the hospital rooms at Vanderbilt. Bobbette's room was dedicated to a lady named Betty.

When the New Kids On The Block reunited, Bobbette was the one who got me to go to the concert. It was at one of the shows we went to that I heard Danny speak about Team Betty and decided to get involved.

Donnie Wahlberg from New Kids On The Block retweeted the blog from last December hours after it was written. Vanderbilt was overwhelmed with calls from fans wanting to be tested to be living donors. The number of people receiving organ transplants just from those calls is in the double digits. It does not include bone marrow, plasma or blood donors, nor the people who have chosen to donate after their death.

If God has a plan that puts together kidneys, small hometowns, reunited boy bands and breast cancer walks in to one package, I promise you He has a plan for your life.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Benefit for Bobbette

On June 18, we will be holding the 'Benefit for Bobbette Miller' in her hometown of Lobelville, TN. The proceeds from this benefit will go towards covering her surgical and post-surgical medical expenses. The average kidney transplant, including hospital stay, is approximately $40,000 - $50,000. However, because of Bobbette's pre-existing medical conditions, her surgery is expected to run upwards of $100,000. It could potentially reach $200,000, depending on the length of time she's required to stay in the hospital. This total does not include the medications she is currently on or the ones that will be added after her transplant. Insurance will cover approximately 80% of the surgical costs. The amount covered for the medications varies depending on which one we're talking about. The remainder of the costs will fall to us.

Yes. Us. Not her... US. Some may think I'm stepping out of line for speaking for all her friends and family, but I feel quite comfortable saying that none of us will leave her to carry this burden by herself. We take care of our own.

Benefit For Bobbette
June 18 -- 2pm til 7:30pm
Main St. in Lobelville, TN
Musical performances by Lost Creek, Coley McCabe, CJ Garton and more.
Silent auction featuring items from Michael McDonald, Darryl Worley, Keith Anderson, Gander Mountain, PF Chang's, and many more.
Food will be available for purchase, as well as a cake walk.

If you would like to donate items or gift cards for the benefit, please send them to the address below no later than June 17:

Benefit for Bobbette Miller
c/o Abbie Vicknair
124 S. 17th St.
Nashville, TN 37206

For those of you who cannot be there but would like to donate, you may donate via the Paypal button below OR a fund has been set up at a local bank:

First Bank
The Benefit of Bobbette Miller fund
Linden, TN
931-589-2161 - ask for Naomi