| September 26th, 2011

* adhunika race for the cure 2011

Sunday, September 18th, 2011, at Central Park, NY, team Adhunika race for the Cure joined the Susan G. Komen for the Cure for a 5k race/walk to share the vision of Susan G. Komen – A world without breast cancer. My friend and founder of Adhunika, Shahnaz Yousuf pledged $250.00 on behalf of the Adhunika team before the race. Thanks to all the friends of Adhunika who contributed, the team ended up raising $1261.00.

I had the honor of joining the walk along with my Adhunika friends Shahnaz Yousuf, Baby Aziz Ahmed, Nandini Roy, Nidha Mubdi, Sharzil Rahman, Nafis Hasan (joined us from Pennsylvania) and Nahid Rahman (walked in Atlanta, Georgia).

This is how it started. One morning Shahnaz called and said that she is signing up Adhunika for fundraising for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure and we had to participate in their 5k walk/race. That instant I was reminded of Rima Apa (Shahnaz’s sister) a good friend of mine.

She was diagnosed with breast cancer about two years ago and had undergone complete mastectomy and chemo therapy. Eventually she had to go through implant surgery. All of the processes from diagnosis to treatment to implants have been extremely painful for her. She still has to go to the hospital often for checkups and she is always in fear that the cancer could have spread to other parts of her body. Rima Apa was always a very upbeat and vibrant person but this whole experience has made her look at life negatively mostly. I don’t talk to her often but whenever I do, she talks very little about her experience – maybe it’s too painful. I just remember one day she told me that if she knew ahead of time that all the surgeries, chemo therapies and checkups were going to be so painful she would have opted for not going through any treatment. Hearing this from a very positive person was quite a shock to me and I don’t think I will ever forget that she said that. She has been very brave.  I didn’t even need any time to think. I told Shahnaz I will do the walk with her unless I have some kind of emergency.

 

It was a very bright and beautiful day. The six of us planned to meet at the corner of 72nd street and Central Park West at 7:30 in the morning. Since I was going from New Jersey I had to catch a very early train to make it there on time. At seven in the morning the areas around Central Park became very alive and vibrant even though it was a Sunday. I grabbed my bib from the registration booth and decided to wait for my teammates at a nearby café. It was a little chilly but it was very exciting to see so many men and women of different ages coming to do the walk or the race. I sat outside the café on the sidewalk and talked with a cancer survivor who came to join the race. She seemed quite young and had three children. She told me that she found out she had cancer right after her third child was born. She had to go through two years of intensive treatment. It cost her marriage but she said she was very happy to be alive and cancer free. She has to have herself checked every four months. I realized then how fortunate I was to see people like her all around me with so much courage who went through treatment, who had cancer or who had lost loved ones to breast cancer.

I met with my friends; we put on our Adhunika T-shirts and started the walk around 9:30 am. The runners went first and then the walkers. Central Park was filled with thousands of people. Senator Chuck Schumer was cheering on everyone at the start line. The volunteers cheered on at different points of the race. We all were very proud and honored to walk with so many people. This is the first time I have joined a race for a cause and it felt really good to be part of it all.  The race ended for us really quickly. The atmosphere was so festive and full with hope we didn’t even feel that we walked three miles.

Thanks to all my Adhunika teammates who made this a memorable day for me and contributed to the race. I am looking forward to doing this again next year and hope that Rima Apa will be able to fly from Chicago and be strong enough to walk with us. And a special thanks to Shahnaz who arranged for Adhunika to join the race. I urge all of you who are reading this and have the means – please join us next year for such a worthwhile cause. Also, if you have the opportunity and are over the age of forty you should make it mandatory to have a mammogram done annually, this is the least you can do for yourself and your loved ones.

 

 

– Salma Rahman

New Jersey, USA

 

 

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Adhunika blog is launched with a mission to share knowledge among women from every walk of life. Sometime it would be in the form of sharing experience to find a feasible solution of a problem; sometime it would be in the form of professional consultation, which Adhunika group will arrange for its bloggers. Nevertheless, the intent of this blog always remains the same - to help and empower women through a common web-based platform....read more

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