My account of life both on and off of two wheels...... "At least I'm enjoying the ride"

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My first post.

My first blog post and it is a bit long! Although I have been keeping a journal for some time now, it seems like these days blogging is an acceptable form of reaching out to the world and telling anyone who cares to read, a bit about me. My journals serve a great purpose in my life but maybe some of my story will serve a purpose for someone else.

A bit about me: My true passion is mountain biking. I started to ride bikes at 5 years old. The glorious moment when my father let go of the back of my banana seat on my styling blue Schwinn and said “keep pedaling, go..go! “ . From that day forward I have loved riding bikes and have been on the search for that eternal bike buzz ever since. Through the years I had a variety of different bikes. Still wish I had that white Peugeot 10 speed my uncle build for me. Oh, the things we hold onto and the things we let go of. ..

Today, while mountain biking is my sport of choice, it is also become a way of life for me. I never do feel the same unless I’ve had my pedal in the woods. I began racing a couple years back. I never thought I could do it but once I started that too became a whole other culture for me. The training, the people, the race day scene and the chatter before and after all became a part of the experience for me. I even went so far as to help form a racing team through my local bike shop. Team Tweed was born....I had my first full season of racing last year. It was a huge success for me! I closed out the local race series in first place. This meant one thing for the 2010 was time to move up “honor the race” to Cat 1/Open Pro class. This was going to mean more training and way more discipline. I was up for the challenge. I started training in January. Long, cold road rides when the warm cozy bed sounds so much more appealing. At the end of March I was really starting to feel strong. I had hit a weight loss goal and just needed to up my intensity. Am I going to be ready to race in a month? I had done the best I can up to this point as life does get in the way. While I would love biking to pay the bills and be the first priority in my life, it just isn’t so.

April would bring about a huge change that I could never have even imagined. It started with a lump I found in my left breast. Yes, I have always done self breast exams. As a young woman in my mid thirties, I knew I had to be an advocate for my own health. I did my best to take care of my body and to try to stay out of the doctors office. I have struggled financially over the past couple years with my business so had let my health insurance laps. I knew in my gut, insurance or not that this lump had to be checked out. It was probably nothing, right? First test….Ultra sound, lead to a mammogram on the same visit. The radiologist scared me half to death with what she told me as we looked at the images together in her office. ( G and I call her the 'terminator of cancer" and she is an amazing doctor and I thank her for that) This was than followed by a needle biopsy. They say 80% of the time these things are benign. That statistic just doesn’t change your thinking and your level of fear during all of this. 48 hours post biopsy, I get the call to come in and bring my mother with me. Oh this can’t be a good sign. My heart pounded and my mind started racing. This can’t be happening. Even when you hear those words “you have breast cancer”, it still doesn’t seem real. Really?! Are you sure? This can’t be. I'm only 36 and my racing season starts in 10 days!

I know now that I have trained for something bigger. I’m in the best physical shape of my life and I’m about to enter the “cancer vortex”. I will need every bit of this strength and courage to fight this out of my body. I am blessed as I have so much love and support near and far that I know I will get through this. We live in amazing times and I am truly lucky for that. My dear grandmother 'Teddy" never got these opportunities and choices that I have today. She died of breast cancer at age 41. I wish I got to meet her.

Off to see the breast surgeon today to finalize the surgery plans. Than of course, I will ride my bike this evening because I can.....

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