iGnite Spotlight: San Diego Member, Amy Schwager
I grew up in Colorado and lived there for 22 years until I re-located to San Diego. People are amazed to learn this fact, as I am always cold (even in San Diego) and you can rarely catch me without a winter hat.
I am lucky enough to be surrounded by 4 delicious boys: Jamie (biggest boy—husband), Brooks (10 yrs old), Bryn (5 yrs old) and Newton (our 13 yr old golden retriever).
Since we just flipped the calendar to October, I am honored to be spotlighted as we celebrate Breast Cancer Awareness month. I have worked for the Susan G. Komen 3-Day, a 60 mile walk raising awareness and much needed funds for breast cancer, for the past 15 years. I began my journey with the 3-Day back in 2002 when I registered to walk the 3-Day. I had no connection to breast cancer. However, after 60 long miles and a few blisters, I can truly say it was an unforgettable journey that I will cherish forever. It was after that experience that I knew I had to be involved in this event any way I could.
The 3-Day is a 60 mile long journey, but it is also a journey of the heart. Filled with love, kindness and pure magic. On the 3-Day, you are overwhelmed and empowered in the most positive ways imaginable. You experience something that defies explanation. You are challenged, inspired, pushed harder and appreciated more than you have ever have before. It is a magical thing and I wish I could bottle up this love and sprinkle it all year long!
What keeps me connected to the cause year after year are the relationships I form and the beautiful impact they have made on my heart. One of the most poignant memories that continues to motivate me to continue our work to find a cure, is an experience I had when I first started working on the 3-Day project. I was caboosing the Kansas City 3-Day (I was responsible for riding my bike behind the last walker). Well, my bike was way too big, and I had no idea how to operate my Nextel. Not a great combination. However, those technical difficulties quickly faded when I came upon 2 little girls, probably around 4 years old, on the side of the route holding a sign saying “Mommy we miss you, please come back”. As the tears welled up, I was dumbfounded at the reality of this plea. We do not realize how precious life is until it is too late. We tend to take each day for granted, not understanding what tomorrow may bring. This is why we walk. And this is why I feel so grateful to do what I do. Every. Single. Day.
Best Advice You’ve Ever Been Given
Not so much advice, but a quote that resonates with me and inspires me to slow down and intentionally be more present with the people that are so precious to me. “The best things in life are the people you love, the places you have seen, and the memories you have made along the way”
In my free time you'll find me...
Love love being at the beach with my boys, watching my littles surf and play in the water. I like to surf too, but haven’t quite mastered the art of surfing during the “winter months”, so you may say I am not a “true surfer” just yet. It makes me happy to be outdoors and relish any time to return to Colorado (where I grew up) to play in the snow or hike in the picturesque mountains.
White. Or Pink. Depends.
Something people may not know about you?
In college, I spent a year studying in Seville, Spain. Upon returning from Spain, I was lucky enough to embark on “Semester at Sea”, visiting 11 different countries. Those experiences left an imprint on my heart and I can’t wait for the opportunity to dust off my passport to explore and learn all over again!