Walking to Beat the Monster
Each year since diagnosis in 2007, Rick and I have walked five miles with the MS Walk fundraiser. The first year we walked through Marblehead Neck, a beautiful area alongside the Atlantic Ocean on a peninsula, with a gentle hill through an attractive neighborhood and then along the ocean wall. We began that walk with our winter coats on, as it was early April, but by the time we reached the half-way rest stop, we were ready to let one of the support drivers take our coats back to the start/finish line. The temperature had risen as the two hours of our walk had passed, but sitting in the school cafeteria after walking, we were happy to have them back again as we cooled down.
The next three years found us walking closer to home, in Newburyport, Massachusetts, along the mouth of the Merrimack River. Still early April, we knew enough to dress in manageable layers rather than bulky winter jackets. And last year, we pre-ordered our own T-shirts, with the slogan “Walking to Beat the Monster” and Team Terry printed on the front. We still qualified for the orange shirts given to those who had raised sufficient funds, but we had a real team, with more than ten relatives and friends walking with us. Rick’s company, Wooden Toy and Gift, was our ‘sponsor’ and paid for our shirts.
This year we will walk in early April again in Newburyport, but we will then walk in Natick, Massachusetts in May, with a team made up of my neurologist’s staff and patients and friends. We feel confident that we will be successful in both walks this year. We’ll focus our fundraising on the Newburyport walk, but I am donating a “Journey of Hope” quilt for the team to raffle off in Natick. I’ve posted pictures in progress here earlier this winter, and it is still in progress. I’m trying different techniques than I’ve ever used before on a quilt, and enjoying it.
I admit, I un-sew almost as much as I sew, as I do make mistakes … and I take frequent breaks as my back tires easily when sitting at the dining room table to sew.
When we finish clearing the second floor of our barn, Rick will make me a sewing table that is a more comfortable height, with the machine level with the table, that will allow me to sew without reaching up to the machine sitting on top of the table. He’ll also make me a cutting table that is higher and will require less bending. Those tables may allow me to work more comfortably and without as many interruptive rest breaks that slow me down.
But for now, after this weekend’s ‘Blizzard of 2013’ and two feet of snow, and temperatures in the teens, the barn has remained closed for lack of heat in the front where we have our shop, and on the second floor. We’ve talked about needing a second heater or wood-stove upstairs, and a newer air condition for summer’s heat. We think, if we budget carefully, we’ll be able to make those improvements in the next year or two.
And then, I will be able to continue sewing for others. It is a pleasure that MS, Melanoma and Depression have failed to take away from me! And, I will continue to walk for MS, to raise money for those who cannot walk with us.