But there were tons and tons of people. They shut down a major street in the state capital, and Arthritis Foundation volunteers and police officers stood at the side streets, offering encouragement to those of us passing by.
The course was about a mile and a half in one direction before we did a u-turn and went back the way we came. I’d say maybe a quarter of the way in, I started feeling it. About half-way, my knees had had enough. Still, I managed to finish the whole 5 km, which was my goal. As a bonus, we didn’t come in last place! But heading in, I was OK with finishing last, as long as I finished.
It was lovely, spending part of my Saturday morning walking with the Professor for a cause that means so much to me. It was so important to me that I do this and that he match me step for step. There’s no one I would have rather done this with and very few in my life who would know how much the simple act of going for a walk would mean.
There have been days—and I’m sure there will be again—when simply getting out of bed was an epic struggle, days when buttoning a shirt reduced me to tears—days when it feels like my body has betrayed me. It was so important for me to push through all of that and walk 5 km, 3.1 miles, by just putting one foot in front of the other, over and over, until I was done. It was important to feel, if only for a few steps, how much my body still does for me, how much I can do.
It was a great day.