It Was Never Just About Me

Many who followed my cycling ride across America have expressed that they’ve actually missed my stories. Who’d have thought? I am humbled by your sentiments and have decided to continue blogging about my endeavors to stay healthy and meet new challenges. So come along for the ride – if you will.

It’s been said that when you embark on certain journeys, they change you and you grow in ways you would never have imagined. I recently reflected on my whirlwind ride and found that it changed me indeed. What started as a check off on my bucket list became so much more. It was more than just being about me and completing a goal. I decided early on that if I was going to take on that challenge, I should raise awareness and funds for something important. I was led to the group Bike the US for MS. They support self-contained riders, and my sister and some friends back home in NY have Multiple Sclerosis. What a match! I also raised funds for pediatric cancer research through The Great Cycle Challenge in honor of Molly, a special person who lost her battle with cancer 3 years ago. I will continue to raise funds for MS and cancer research, but will also join in other fights and ride, run, walk, or just be for a cause. As a matter of fact, I have two events later this month.

Light the Night Walk for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society – I will be walking with my friend Danielle who survived a battle with leukemia last year and taught me so much about courage and faith.

Tour de Fox – raising funds for Parkinson’s Disease research. I will be riding with a long time friend who has the disease and is an inspiration with her positive attitude.

How else have I grown or changed?

I stopped watching the news and being cynical. There are such good people out there who are wanting to help or make a difference in any way they can. They are curious and interested and fun and caring and so much more! I met Charlton on day 1. He found my lost packet of cash, credit card and id along the road and found a way to return it to me! On day 7, I met up with LaVoy and others from the Union Pacific Rail crew. They made sure I had safe passage and kept me hydrated and replenished on a hot day along the Great Salt Flats. Alan made sure I didn’t walk too far with a flat tire on Day 8. Team Cubby Comfort Dog gave us food, shelter, and worship on day 11. And we met up with many more LCC Comfort Dog Teams along the way that were wonderful to us. Then on day 27, Nancy generously gave me shelter from the storm.

My Comfort Dog Friends – Aaron, Cubby, Eddie, Moses, Joy, Katie, Anna, Gracie, Shami, Barnabas, Lydia, Obadiah and Jessy.

I also learned that staying connected with friends and family is a good thing. They love you forever, no questions asked. And some friends are family! Even if you haven’t seen them in years, it will feel like it was yesterday. You really can go home again.

And I now know more about me and what I’m made of. I did this ride in part to see if I could. I now know that I can. When it gets tough, I can push on. And I’ve grown by learning that even though it looks like I am riding solo, I never really am.

Since I’ve returned, several people have told me it was inspiring. That alone makes me feel great about completing the trek. Many people inspired me so if I can pay that forward to even one person, it was worth it.

Song of the day:

Stay tuned to hear more about the causes I support or the challenges I take on.

Ride on!

16 thoughts on “It Was Never Just About Me”

  1. I loved following your journey each day. I usually read your blog each day on my lunch break. It was always a nice mid day inspiration. Thank you so much for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good morning, I am so glad to see you here again, as a matter of fact, I have been missing the July days I couldn’t wait to log on and see what your day was and love reading, smiling, sometime even tears especially your finale!!!

    I am again so proud of you to find courage and inspirations on continuing this blog on fop all the good causes to bring awareness to all these conditions and join people together for them!!!

    Go Michelle! I am right behind you, with a lot of others, as I quote these famous sayings:

    “Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what other can’t.”
    ——Jery Rice

    “If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you right into your purpose.”

    “Some people come into your life a blessings. Some people come your life as lessons.
    ——-Mother Teresa of Calcute

    “Friendship is the source of the greatest pleasures, and without friends, even the most agreeable purshuits becme tedious.”
    ——-Thomas Aquinas

    “Unless someone like you cares a whole aweful lot, nothing is going to get better. I t’s not.”
    Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss)

    Until next time, Michelle! God is here, with us!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Michelle,
    Me too….I rarely watch the news anymore, everything is so negative. I keep my opinions to myself when it comes to religion or politics. I try to remain positive and be helpful as much as I can. I will be leaving on vacation soon and was wondering if you will take lead on the LWBW rides and keep the group motivated to ride more miles. So far they are up to 60 miles and they want to add 10 more. Are you available on 8/19, 8/26, 9/2, 9/9? Any of these days will work if you can. Please talk to Andrea Notch. Thanks….I hope to see you on the group rides soon. Rob

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Michelle:
    I was really affected by your Song of the Day Choice: Heath’s: “Give Me Your Eyes”. I printed out the lyrics and plan to use them to open my Handler Meeting this week. Couldn’t think of a better mantra for the Comfort Dog Program.
    Got a chance to meet Aaron and talk to some of his NAPA Handlers at the Convention last month (of course, your bike ride was the subject of much of our conversation). Hope to see Mr. SAG and you in Northbrook next year.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I saw the same thing with the attitude of America on my journey from Iowa to New Orleans in that our people are much nicer and open and even conservative than the “news” would have us believe. It was cool.

    Liked by 1 person

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