Here’s a little background about myself. I have a degree in Anthropology (and Geography) and once upon a time I wanted to be an archaelogist who focused on human evolution. Think Louis Leakey, Lucy, Australopithecus…
One of my hero’s is Jane Goodall. No, she’s not an archaeologist but she is a powerful woman who worked for Louis Leakey had passion for something she believed in… and she made it happen. Years ago I read her book Reason for Hope where she talked about her journey. I was immediately inspired and I had hope that my dream job would happen too. Today, Jane travels around the world with a stuffed monkey that someone she admires gave to her as a present. She says that the monkey brings inspiration and anyone who touches it will be inspired too.
Back in October, you know, Breast Cancer Awareness month…I participated in the Lunch for a Cure Tacoma. About a week or so before the event, I was asked by Puget Sound Komen if I would be interested in being interviewed during the ‘Coffee Chat’ portion of the lunch. Coffee Chat is where Jean Enerson, a local news celebrity would interview three people – a nurse navigator, a researcher, and a survivor. I was the survivor portion of the chat. I arrived a little early that day to the event becuase I wasn’t 100% sure what I was supposed to do or where I was going to go. As I rode the escalator to the top of the floor where the event was taking place, I immediately saw the pink and white Mini Cooper that was being auctioned off. $10 for one raffle ticket and all proceeds go to the Puget Sound Komen Affliate. Since I was early, and since I was participating, and since I just happened to have a $10 bill in my purse, I decided I should probably buy a raffle ticket.
How many raffle tickets have you bought? How many raffles have you actually won? Yeah…me too. Until now…
About a month later I got a text from Jamie at the Komen office saying she needed to talk with me. This isn’t really that unusal because I’m one of the Race for the Cure co-chairs and we basically talk on a weekly almost daily basis. I was in a meeting but when I was done I sent her a text back. Minutes later she called. She wanted to introduce me to a man name Brad – I assumed (never assume anything) that Brad would be joining our race committee. At least that’s what I thought… He started by saying “Hi Rebecca, this is Brad from NW Mini.” I stopped…all of a sudden this light bulb went off and I thought oh crap, I entered that raffle. How much is this going to cost me? How am I going to tell my husband. He went on to tell me I had indeed won the pink and white Mini Cooper (a one year lease) that was being auctioned off. I was estastic! I couldn’t believe it! I immediately went to my husband’s office and told him – as if it were a puppy…”can we keep it??”
We went through the process, found out about the details and made arrangements to pick it up. I decided I wouldn’t tell anyone until I actually had it. I then, of course, posted on Facebook – because that’s what you do when you need to tell the world important information – that I was at the NW Mini dealership picking up my ‘raffle prize’. I later posted the picture that the dealership took.
The car is indeed pink and white but it has something special about it…it’s signed by survivors and those we remember who put up a good fight. To me, this car gives me inspiration – just like Jane’s stuffed monkey. I know it sounds silly that a materialistic thing like a car inspires me but it’s fun to drive. Most of all, it’s the names of the people who have signed the car that really bring me inspiration. People wave, honk their horn, and stop me to show me the name of the person they recognize. They tell me the story of their loved one or friend and how they fought so hard. I’m inspired by all their stories. I’m reminded that we are making an impact and eventually we will find a cure.
So if you see me driving around between Olympia and Seattle, give a little honk, send a little wave, or even shoot me the peace sign. If you happen to see me stopped somewhere and you’re a survivor, I carry a pen in my purse and I’d love…no…I’d be honored if you signed the car because you inspire me.