Late entry from September 11 because in the middle of butt nowhere Manitoba on a horse race track there is no reception.
Wow we are at day 6 already and we are 4 provinces in! The last two days have been hot, windy- tail wind yesterday and today a cross wind, and some shotty pavement. However this ride isn’t about the bike for me. It is about inspiring and giving hope to families we meet across the country that are living in my shoes.
I will be honest, when I signed up for this ride this time around I did it only because I couldn’t let dad do it alone- I mean he needs me right? I make sure he eats enough, stays hydrated and I think I am also there to remind him of his “why”. But here we are at day 6 and I have been struggling with my “why”. The “why are you doing this for a 3rd time?”, the “well you have already done this before whats different this time?”…well I can tell you this for sure is NOT about the riding for me at all. It is about the kids I get to meet like Inara who I met on our first day a week ago when we rode to BC children’s hospital. She is seriously so spunky and extroverted like me. Today her mom sent me a photo of her in her rider jersey riding her “too small bike”.
Or yesterday when I was having a really tough day and I got a video message from Greta my little buddy from Calgary and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect.
Or today when we came into our last stop before the end and I met Preston. He had all the questions about my bike (he is 6); why is it so little? Why doesn’t it have shocks? Why are your tires smooth, don’t you slip? Why do your tires not match? (I had a flat). I loved the passion about his own loves for hockey and music.
At the end of the day we finished our day in Milita- a very small town known for the large Banana they have on the side of the highway. We rolled in and there as a small biker gang waiting for us; the two boys in previous national rider jerseys and a sister and a brother- Corsen had ALL when he was 26 months. Same cancer as me and he is a twin to Lexie, and then their COUSIN Jace was diagnosed with cancer when he was wee too- Joey wore a t-shirt that said “my brother survived cancer”. These 4 rode with us into our last stop and Mario my amazing team mate puhed little Jace. My heart was SO full of love.
I needed today. I needed to sit in the RV with Kelly and remember my why as I was struggling- I am here to raise awareness for these kids. To tell my story. To bring hope so that in their darkest days they can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The National Kids Cancer Ride challenges me in so many ways, but like my dear patient and friend Mariano would have said “Don’t take yourself too seriously. Know when to laugh at yourself and find a way to laugh at the obstacles that inevitably present themselves”.
With SO much love,