Thursday, January 25, 2007

Full-Speed Ahead

Tuesday night was our Relay for Life Kickoff celebration. Last year, with the help of many people in our school district, I revived our county's Relay for Life for the American Cancer Society. It was the most exhausting thing I've ever done, but also one of my proudest moments. We're organizing it again at my school this year, and I was starting to feel the sophomore slump. Until Tuesday night.

Tuesday night I found out that our humble little Relay was recognized by the ACS as an "All-American Relay." We were the only Relay in northern Kentucky to win that this year. We have a cool sign we will be able to display at the next Relay showing our "All-American" status. In with our swag there was also a very classy glass plaque recognizing me as a "Mid-South Division Community Volunteer of the Year." I am such a sucker for awards; somewhere in my mom's house I still have all the certificates and pins I won in middle- and high-school. Everytime I win something, I get all misty and start pretending I've just won my Oscar:

"I'd like to thank all of you for supporting me and for helping a young librarian from Kentucky to overcome so many obstacles so that I could acheive what I've always wanted to achieve--to be named the Mid-South Division Community Volunteer of the Year. It's an honor I couldn't have dreamed of years ago, when I spent the last weekend in June inside in the air-conditioning drinking Icees and eating frozen Snickers bars and falling asleep listening to a Reds game instead of staying awake for 24 hours straight and watching people walk around a high-school track all night.....Wait, why did I say I was honored again?"

Seriously, I am honored and moved. Mostly because I couldn't have done it without the commitment and dedication of a whole lot of people that I didn't even know that well before I asked for their help.

We're doing a good thing. And doing good things feels good. So I am energized that we will get past some of the bad luck that has dogged our 2007 Relay team and have another successful event. And after it's all over and the money has all been counted, I know I will probably have an Icee, a Snickers, and some drowsy Reds-game-watching just waiting for me.

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