Relay for Life: “Spend the night & finish the fight.”

Last night I participated in NUI Galway Cancer Society’s second annual Relay for Life event in aid of the Irish Cancer Society – and what a night it was! By 6am this morning we were fit for nothing but sleep but there was no denying what a spectacular night it had been.

The relay is a pretty simple concept – everyone enters a team (a tenner per head) and at least one member of the team must be walking/dancing/crawling their way around the Kingfisher Sports hall in NUI Galway at all times. I joined two of my housemates on a team and for 12 hours we lapped up the positive vibes and remembered those who are battling or have battled cancer.

The event is representative of the journey cancer sadly brings so many on. Even when people’s feet were beginning to tire the organisers found new ways to keep us going – something a cancer patient bravely does daily.

The night was scheduled into different stages. This started with The Candle of Hope ceremony.

The Candle of Hope ceremony remembered all those who have ever fought cancer. Paper bags with messages of hope and remembrance drawn on the outside were lit up around the hall. It was a poignant moment in the night, reminding us exactly why we were taking part.

There was plenty of fun and games too as each team battled it out in team competitions. Every team table also had wares to sell also in aid of the Irish Cancer Society. We sold pizza – a massive hit when hunger started to kick in around midnight!

Other tables had henna tattoos, bake sales and a fierce Mario Kart tournament! Local musicians had us all busting a few moves too, keeping sleep at bay.

A massive karaoke session ended the night off on a high and we all did one final lap, counting down the last remaining minute before we finally headed for home and our welcoming beds.

I had a really busy day today in college and ordinarily if I had stayed awake so long grouchiness would have gotten the better of me.  However the feel good factor must still have had me firmly in its grips and any remaining positive energy I had from the night before got me through the day. (I’ve kind of hit the tiredness wall now though…)

Relay for Life is something I’m truly glad I’ve experienced and it just goes to show how doing good can make you feel even good-er. (Yep, good-er. Running on 3 and a half hours sleep here!)

-Sorcha

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