Friday, May 1, 2009

Relay for Life

Josh, Eli, and I went to our city's Relay for Life event tonight at the riverfront. For those of you that don't know, Relay for Life is a nationwide event that takes place to raise money for the American Cancer Society. Organizations, businesses, and people in the community form teams and raise money for Relay for Life all throughout the year. Then on a designated night, everyone attends the Relay for Life event where there are booths, games, food, music, and lots of fun. There are TONS of people there walking the track all throughout the night. One of the mottos from this event is "Cancer Never Sleeps", so for one night, people give up their sleep to help raise awareness and money for cancer.

I don't know anyone that hasn't been touched in some way or form by cancer. I know my family has. Several years ago, I lost my cousin, Nathan, to cancer, when he was only 5 years old. Most recently, my grandfather died after fighting a long battle against lung cancer. I know these stories are probably similar to many people out there. This is one of the reasons why I am so proud of the fact that the community where Josh and I live has the fifth largest Relay for Life event in the country. WOW! If you could see our town, you would understand why this is so HUGE! We may not be a big town, but we have BIG hearts :)

Josh and I got Eli ready and we went down to the riverfront for Relay for Life. Josh's work had a team and my school had a team, so we each wanted to be there for the team lap around the track. We knew we wouldn't be able to stay very long, because Eli would have to go to bed really soon, but we weren't going to miss this event.

On top of the levee overlooking Relay for Life
As you can already tell, Eli is EXTREMELY sleepy.

Eli had just woken up from a nap about thirty minutes before we left for Relay for Life and I don't think he had his nap entirely out when we got to the riverfront. He was very mellow (so not like him) and wasn't really smiling that much. It took a little while, but he finally started sharing some of those smiles I love.

Sucking on that bottom lip...again!

Another reason, Josh and I wanted to attend this particular Relay for Life is because Josh's boss, Cliff, is currently fighting (and winning!) his own battle against cancer. Cliff is one of the nicest people that Josh and I have ever met. He is so generous, kind, loving, and considerate to everyone he meets. I am so thankful that Josh can work for a man like this. Throughout his whole ordeal, he has always been so positive and upbeat. He has placed all of his trust and faith in God and he is resting in the fact that God knows exactly what he's doing. It was so wonderful to see Cliff out there with all the rest of the cancer survivors as they circled the track on their Survivor's Lap. We gave him and all the other survivors lots of cheers as they passed.

Josh giving Cliff a high five.

Cliff and Eli

After the Survivor's Lap, Eli and I strolled down to my school's booth. This year our theme was "Castaway Cancer" and several of the teachers I teach with dressed up like members from the cast of Gilligan's Island. Eli was able to get a quick photo with the castaways :) Aren't they just too cute?!

All too soon, it was time to leave. Eli was exhausted and so were Mommy and Daddy. I can't wait to see how much money our community was able to raise this year tomorrow morning. I know it's going to be GREAT!

**Take time to say a little prayer for Cliff and for anyone else you know that is currently fighting against cancer. Pray for God's healing in their lives and for God's strength in their lives.


Audra said...

I loved this post. It gave me chills to see the survivors walking around the track. God is good!

Beppa said...

Oh, precious this is to me! Just sitting here looking at the pics and trying to read the posts, thru tears...thanks, Amanda.

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