Monday, March 25, 2013

The Not-So-Lonely Road

A chemo buddy and I were talking some weeks ago.  "Not losing your marbles during cancer treatment", was the topic up for discussion. I commented that Sam has always been there for me and that I've got the most incredible friends.  "It still must have been a lonely journey at times", she said.

I won't pretend that there weren't a few moments, usually while I was sat waiting for some procedure or another, when I wished there was someone physically there.  Without fail, just as I began to feel sorry for myself, there'd be a text from Elise, or my colleague Kate, or Laura, or Lynne, or Sarah, or Cecilia.  I'd come home and tweet about what I'd been doing and there'd be a flurry of supportive messages. This has not been a lonely journey.

I have noticed a change in myself. Once I could ride solo for hours and hours.  Come wind, rain, snow, hail, I would be out on my bike, on my own. In recent months I haven't seen the appeal in this.  I think my cycling has become far more recreational and sociable.  I haven't wanted to be alone.  

Yesterday I did exactly that. Sam is off being fabulous on a Rapha Continental shoot in Wales and my other friends are sane, and didn't want to ride in the snow.  I wanted to get out into the fresh air. I've been inspired by an amazing rider I met at a CX sportive.  She was well into her 50s but whizzed past me on a nasty climb.  She beat me by an hour over the length of the course but still came over to chat and be encouraging at the cake hut afterwards.

I was surprised how comfortable I felt for the five hours that I was out plodding round Richmond Park on my mountain bike.  I enjoyed the cold and the sensation of working hard against the wind and up the climbs.  I also enjoyed the chance meeting with Elise, Dave and baby Erin just as I turned for home. A perfect reminder that I'm here because my friends have kept me safe. Thank you.

No comments:

Post a Comment