It’s been over a week since I attended the Avon Walk Pre Event in NYC. This post is very much overdue!
Having never attended a pink walk in my entire life (or any other walk come to think of it-I tend to be the armchair person), I had no idea what I might expect.
I know that anyone who has ever participated in these events talk about the powerful emotions they experience. I know that when I first sat down with my friend after being newly diagnosed, she (only half jokingly) asked what having breast cancer meant to her. “Does it mean I’m supposed to be running in some kind of a race?” (Today, as she progressed from Stage 1 to Stage 4 in little more than a year, those words hold a completely different meaning.)
I was at the event on behalf of the Army of Women and I am thrilled to say we were able to add over 200 new members. Many of the women were already members (after all, the AOW is the Love AVON Army of Women and this was the Avon Walk) and those who were not members graciously gave us their time as we explained exactly what they would be “joining.”
When I arrived to set up, I was overwhelmed by the sheer size of the room and the number of volunteers on behalf of Avon and the other sponsors whom I will refrain from listing I am sure I will forget many so I will simply stick with Avon as this is their signature event.
At 2PM sharp, the doors opened for the participants and the room erupted into cheers as the first group entered to begin the registration process. Many stopped by to share stories. Emotions were high. Every person had a story. There were lots of people. Translates to lots of stories and in my mind, that just means we need to get on a different bandwagon and start effecting some real change.
If any of you participated in an Avon Walk over the past several years, you will understand when I say that nothing touched me more than “Moo Cow Guy” and his absolute dedication to participating in every walk all over the country. Cow Guy, whose name is Seth came to the AOW table to talk about how he heard Susan Love speak many years ago. He was so impressed by her passion and determination, he felt he needed to do something to support her efforts.
As we were talking, I was stunned at the number of walkers who saw him in his cow gear and began shouting from across the room, “Moo Cow Guy!” They were running to hug him and talk about “that race four years ago” or remember when “we saw you in Chicago.” Seth is a special person in so many ways. He fund raises for the sole purpose of providing a cheering squad at every walk.
|L-R: Me, Seth, Sharon|
|Seth & Allison|
We chatted for a time. He told me he hoped he would have the chance to meet Dr. Love one day. When I told him I had the honor and privilege to meet her a few weeks ago, he was full of questions. He watched our interview clip and then he became the Cow Ambassador for the Army of Women. He never realized he could sign up for the Army and he was so enthusiastic to be one of the few good men. He bounced around running from one group to another. His joy was contagious. Silly though it may seem to some, anyone whose passion and sincerity eminates from a genuine place of love and hope is someone I want to be in my life.
I thank Avon for providing Army of Women to recruit at the event. I thank my fellow NY volunteers, Sharon (and her husband Elliot who joined us for a good part of the day) and Allison who not only helped recruit but also walked in the event on Saturday and Sunday.
And I thank Moo Cow Guy for being someone who truly makes me want to be a better person. Seth: Selfless and sincere. It doesn’t get much better than that.