Sunday, March 20, 2011

Am I Ready?

During the last couple of weeks, more and more people are asking me, "Are you ready?"  Interesting question.  Should be simple to answer, right?  My options are "yes, bring it on" or "no, I don't think I am."  But, the answer is more difficult.  Am I ready....for what? 

Am I ride?  Yes, I think so. 

Am I meet a lot of new people and share about what we are doing and why?  Yes, definitely, without a doubt. 

Am I ready....for the disease to progress within my Dad?  No, but through this process I have met other PD patients which have made me realize how "lucky" he is.....we are.  His symptoms are mild compared to others I have met. 

Am I do my best?  Yes, what my best is; is unknown right now.

Am I ready....are you?

Are you ready....if something similar would happen to someone you love?

Are you ready....if something similar would happen to you?

Are you make a difference?

Are you join Team POP's and make a difference in the lives of those impacted by PD?

Are you do more than just give a few dollars?

Well, are you?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

March Update.....we have been busy.

I’ve been trying to find time to update everyone on the happenings but life just keeps coming and taking the minutes away.  So, right now I have some time and its better if no one knows where this time was found.

Ride Preparations
A lot has happened.  The ABA BMX has offered their RV to us at no charge.  Although it has less actual beds, the cost savings are significant.  We will gladly accept sleeping on an air mattress in order to pass more on funds on to the Foundations.  The ABA has also been great helping us with some of our equipment and ride needs.  Cool people – but we already knew that, as they too, understand the amazing power of the bicycle.

Our friend Brandee from the AZ MS Society has not only been planning the AZ MS150 for about 800 hundred of her friends but has also found some time to collect in-kind donations for us.  Thank You Brandee, you are incredible.  Sorry we won’t be able to make the 2011 Ride but we do plan on being at the 2012 party.

Rachel has been busy finding us places to lay our weary heads for 42 nights – this is not a small task!  She has found us a B&B in Louisiana, churches in Florida, Texas and New Mexico and even a couple of cabins.  Most of these places are right on our route or within a few miles.  She has had good days and bad days working on our lodging needs and overall has come in under budget while finding us some crazy places to stay and amazing people to meet and thank.  Rachel, we will appreciate your hard work every night when we have a hot shower and comfy bed!

Although I have only known Carl for about a month, I think I could already write a short story about him.  You see Carl has PD.  It has slowed him down but not stopped him.  Carl and his friend Casey are going to meet Shannon, Kyle and me at the New Mexico/Arizona state line.  They are then going to ride with us into Phoenix.  Carl is going to ride as much as he can.  Rumor has it he told Casey, “you need to cover all the miles I am not able to.”  Pretty obvious Casey respects Carl to agree to such a challenge.  The ride into Phoenix will not be flat. 

Carl is excited about riding and helping with POP’s Ride.  I am not sure he truly understands how excited POP’s Ride is to have Carl ride with us.  How cool is to cross the state line knowing we have friends there waiting for us.  We are riding to help the Carl’s and Dad’s and Pam’s and Jean’s and Mom’s of the world who live with PD or are caregivers to those with PD every day.  Yet, here comes Carl telling us how grateful he is that we let him ride with us.

Carl has a fundraising goal of $25,000.  The other day he received some good donations and I sent him and email stating, “Carl, You Rock.”  The next day he responded, “Shane, today I feel like a rock.”  If you know anything about PD, you know that means Carl was having a bad day and was probably having a difficult time moving. 

The Ride is not about Me…..yet it is about Me.  I have been asked a lot lately if I am physically ready for The Ride.  My answer, “I don’t know.”  How can one truly know they are ready for a task like this, if they have never done anything even remotely close to a task like this? 

A task, yep, that is how I see The Ride.  Mr. Webster defines task as “a usually assigned piece of work often to be finished within a certain time; something hard or unpleasant that has to be done; duty.”  Hmmmm, guess I never understood the real meaning of a task!  I always thought it was a small activity that needed to be completed.  As opposed to a project which sounds ominous, ginormous and overwhelming.  I don’t see The Ride as something hard or unpleasant…..although it will be challenging and is something that “has to be done.”  The Ride will push me to my limits – physically, emotionally, spiritually. 

Duty – that is an interesting part of the definition.  I like that.  It means completing The Ride is my responsibility, my obligation, my assignment.  We all know what comes with Duty…..Honor…..’nuf said.

I still am in awe of all the help Shannon and I are receiving with “our little idea.”  One always dreams about doing something great that leaves a mark; yet, most of us know even “15 minutes of fame” is virtually unattainable.  We joke about POP’s Ride becoming the next Livestrong or 3-Day – but secretly, inside, to be involved with an organization which makes a significant and positive impact on the lives of those impacted by PD would be incredible and a job we would love to work at every day.  Maybe, just maybe, all of us can make it happen. 

Michael, Davis, Muhammad, Janet, Carl, Pam, Dad……you in?  We are – both feet and head first.  Look out World, here comes POP’s Ride!