Dear Everybody Out There Who is Kindly Taking Time to Read My Blog,
I’m thrilled to say that the donations this year were really amazing ($2490), and I’m honored to list the folks below who were so kind to donate
on behalf of my ride:
David, Lucy, Kelsey and Maddi Indorf
The Jackson Family
The Kelpen Family
Joan Montana (thank you so much for the box of sweet smelling and yummy goodies, too!!)
Neil and Teresa Ferguson
Kim and Roy Steinhagen
My mom and dad
David & Beth Lester
Celeste, Martin, Belle and Patrick Hubert
Debbie Garner and Family
Jim and Wanda Mills
Mrs. Linnea Hart
Holly and Jim
THE RIDE ITSELF:
Friday came, and I had prepped like last year, only further…instead of riding 1/2 a block the night before, I rode an entire mile two days before! Yes! The workout of a champion who has faith that 50 miles is a ride, not a race!
And, so, Friday morning, as I was trying on my bike shorts and figuring out which shirt I would wear the next morning, I received some upsetting news about a very dear friend in Dallas, someone who has been an important father-figure, consistent confidante and adopted family member. I was informed that my friend, Jerry, had been diagnosed with Parkinsons, was getting a pacemaker put in (I found out it had been put in before I arrived), and that he was not doing very well at all.
I discussed this news with Lance, my husband, and he told me what, in my heart, I knew I wanted to do: Go to Dallas and be with my friend now. You just can’t know.
That was it. I would go. I was bummed to miss the race, but my friendship was calling and, so, I grabbed some things and hopped in the car to go see Jerry, to see what I could do to support his wife, too. I needed to hold his hand and see his face and understand the state of his health. And I am so very, very glad I did. Although Jerry is in poor health, we spent
time together talking, and I felt he was, mentally, sharp as a tack. Spending time with his wife and son, too, sharing a meal and talking about what has been going on since I saw them all last made me realize, once again, how fragile we all, truly, are and that our time together on this planet is to be treasured and soaked into the skin with each encounter.
As for the race: My dear friend, Jack Jeansonne, my sole team mate (I had a team mate this year! YES!), arrived at the starting point in Krause Springs on Saturday morning and rode the entire thing by himself, and in good time! He crossed the finish line in about 4 1/2 hours. Whoa! It’s amazing because I don’t think Jack worked out either, although I have to say he is super cool because he rides his bike to work every day (about two miles away.) So, Jack was DEFINATELY more trained than I will ever hope to be.
So, here is this blog entry, summed up:
I am blessed to have people who supported this cause I believe in. Thank you to each of you for your generousity and kindness in helping those with AIDS, helping researchers to find a cure,
helping me believe I can ride that race! (I will return next year, promise!)
We must always respond to the call of a friend in need because the moments come and go so quickly. I am thankful to my husband for his encouragement and wisdom.
That we all must live our lives fully on the way to death. It isn’t easy for us to think about it, but we all will die. No one escapes the greatest mystery alongside birth. How we choose to spend our time
on this path is cause for reflection daily. I am grateful to be surrounded by people who remind me to enjoy the laughter, the tears, yes, even the pain, along the way. My friends teach me so very much. Thank you, Jerry. (And Doris, too.)
Celebrate those that can cross the finish line….Jack, thanks for honoring so many by riding that race. You rock.
Know that you can ride a bike race if you just set your mind to it. Or whatever challenge is in your way.
As always, a big heart full of love,