My 2009 New Years Resolution was to do something that challenged me.  I was inspired by my husband who ran in the Marine Corp Marathon the year before.  I hate running so I knew that type of challenge would be out of the question.  A few days later I received an ad for the Breast Cancer 3-Day (or at least that was what it was called last year).  Walking 60 miles in 3 days and raising $2,300 all for a good cause.  Honestly the raising money part was the hardest for me.  I’m not very good at asking for money.

I trained religiously, taking time from my family and spending it out on the sidewalks of the town I live in.  I was determined to be prepared.  I walked in rain, snow, heat, and cold.  There was one 10 mile training walk in the rain that just crushed me.  I was a 1.5 miles from home and just wanted to lay down and cry.  It was that moment when I saw my husband drive up with a dry pair of socks and some chocolate to help me finish that walk. Talk about love.

Over the months of training I started noticing hearts.  I would see heart stickers stuck on the sidewalk, heart beads, rocks that looked like hearts and even litter that had somehow managed to make heart shapes.  I took pictures of the hearts I found.  I even have one of the rocks I found, sitting on my windowsill in the kitchen.  I wondered how many other people noticed them.

Finding those hearts gave me a little boost both physically and emotionally.  It was like the powers that be were letting me know that they approved of what I was doing.  Letting me know that I was doing the right thing.  Giving me a glimpse at what was to come.

The first weekend in October  2009 I walked my 60 miles with energy left over.  It was an amazing experience.  Everybody was there for their own reasons, but they were all brought there by the same thing. Love.  Love for a friend, sister, mother.  Love for their husband, brother, father.  Love for themselves.  I felt totally amazing that last day.  I had accomplished so much with the love from so many people along the way.  But my husband was the person that just made it all possible.  His love is what kept me going.

I still find hearts when I am out walking and running errands.  They always make me smile and wonder if others have noticed them too.  So, when you are out and about look for those hidden hearts.  They really are everywhere.  They are a reminder of the love that surrounds you everyday.


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