Monday, August 19, 2013

The 2013 seen by our teammate Kevin Romer

The 2013 FLX Tour de Cure is now history. I am both happy and sad…happy that I took part and made lots of new friends, and rekindled the old and sad to know that it is “over”…for this year!!!

I want to say to my best friend and riding partner…Kristen Romer… THANK YOU and I love you!!

To the most awesome team ever…the NS Power Train…you are the best ever!!! Your inspiration and motivation was a huge driving force. The force behind a team like this just drives energy!!! Thank you for allowing me to be a small part of huge effort!!!

Yesterday started out pretty early as we wanted to be there when the Century riders departed. Doing 100mi on a bike…AWESOME…and maybe not next year for me, but if it all works out, for sure the year after.

Then I needed to decide whether to do the 20mi route or jump and do the 35mi route. My longest ride ever was 21mi (adult life anyways) so I knew I could do the 20 without a problem, but now I needed to challenge myself again…20 or 35?? Right up till the registration table, when I was asked which route..I said… 35!!! That decision all alone was bittersweet for me…I wanted the challenge, but I didn’t want to leave my friend and riding partner. I am sorry for that but happy I chose the challenge.

As the 35mi group departed, I waved and off I went. To “the hill”!! Let me tell you that “the hill” was worse than I imagined. I rode a small distance when it was just faster to walk and push the bike. When I looked up the hill, it was a relief to see that I was not the only one walking. It was amazing to see those that could ride up the entire hill and disappear…someday…maybe it will be me doing that.

When I go to a point I could begin to actually ride the bike, the course continued an uphill climb, even with the short downhills, the course continued upward. I struggled at times, caught a few riders and passed them (nice!!) and was passed by them at another point (not so nice) and arrived at the first checkpoint. Ate about half an orange, took a breath and off I went…as I left the girls working the rest stop said “it’s all downhill from here!!”…it was obvious quite quickly that honesty is not a trait for rest stop volunteers!!!

The ride from Dundee to Himrod was actually pretty nice, although the climb seemed to continue for
about 5 more miles…then the start downhill. Across the tracks (successfully I will add), turn left and
across to more sets of tracks (still without issue), then UPHILL to the rest stop. Doing okay still, but the sun is beginning to take a toll on me. If you know me…I am not a big fan of direct sunlight…and shade was not to be found.

Left the rest stop with my friend Doug Wheeler and headed for Watkins…knowing that I was half done was relief. Course seemed have leveled off some and I was able to make some pretty good time…got into a zone and cruised.

With the third rest stop approaching…I was feeling pretty good, but knew if I stopped there…it might have been my last stop…so I kept going…right on by. After a couple of stretches of highway that you could see several miles in the distance, and the beating sun, and what appeared to be no progress being made…and mirages of cool water and palm trees began to appear…I need to get out of the sun…BADLY. The 14A overpass came into view…I HAD TO STOP!!! The VanDruff crew stopped and asked if I was okay and commented “its all downhill from here” and if I wanted to finish the course with them?? Off we went…downhill into Watkins.

As we all crossed the “finish line”… it was awesome to see my wife waiting for me… I did it!!!

35.5mi in 3h 36m… my thighs were on fire, I was cooking from the sun…and needed a cold drink!!! But I did it!!!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

A Personal Story from a Team NS Mom

Ten years ago today ours lives changed forever. 

The nagging feeling that something just wasn't right with our Megan. The mystery of the number 11 and the distinct feeling that Aunt Ruth who had passed away was trying to get a message to me. The wondering why Megan would be chatty and happy and full of herself one minute then sound asleep the next, why she cried out in panic that she couldn't see the T.V., the headache that kept her company for a couple days and finally the thirst that she couldn't seem to quench. As we contemplated checking her blood sugar with Ted's glucometer, a decision you don't make lightly when you are considering poking a 4 year olds baby soft finger tip with a needle the thickness of a tack to get a drop of blood. 

I bolted up in bed and declared "the date totals number 11 Ted, we have to check her'. The meter came back with the message "HI" which means the level is above 650, (normal is 80-120)and I phoned the pediatrician on call, we had instructions to head to the ER room right away, I watched as my husband sobbed knowing what Megan was going to have to live with, a panic started to rise within me and before I could succumb to the sobs an overwhelming sense of peace came over me. I just KNEW we were going to be okay. 

The next days weeks and months are a blur but day by day; we are getting through it. The beginning was incredibly tough as we had to hold Megan down for shots; pull her out of her hiding places to inject her with the insulin that she needs to stay alive. As the days went on Megan came to accept this was part of her life now and it wasn't going away. It hasn't ever been easy but she is living her life and enjoying sports, some incredibly great friends, sleep overs, and siblings who have held her when she was sick with high or low symptoms. 

As we wrap up a Decade with Diabetes I am grateful to my family and friends for all of their support over the years and most importantly to Heather Henbest and Ted Henbest who have sacrificed so much to support their sister through 10 years of this battle.