Monday, August 12, 2013

That's Not A Hill, It's A Mountain! Day 6

This is one amazing foundation! Always Keep Pedaling helps young adult cancer survivors by giving them grants to help follow their active lifestyle dreams. There are tons of organizations out there that offer grants but most of them are medical expenses, life expenses or school expenses. One of the biggest things about finding your new normal after cancer and having a healthy recovery is physical activity. AKP's is focusing on helping cancer survivors get what they need to always keep pedaling. Today's post goes out to thanking them! I named this post that's not a hill it's a mountain for many reason but the main being that we tend make more out of things than they really are often not even wanting to try them because of that. So you have to overcome your mountain and AKP helped me literally and figuratively!

Jon, you are an amazing, inspiring person! I was so excited to have met you a year ago at the young adult cancer survivor conference at Dana-Farber and learn about AKP. Then to have been given the opportunity to go on a bike weekend in Vermont was just as exciting. Although I will admit I was scared out of my mind to be on a bike for an entire weekend, I honestly didn't think I could do it. Then you greeted us at the house, welcomed us and gave us the run down of the weekend. I think you could sense my apprhension because you said to me that no matter what I can go at my own pace, there will always be an option to stop and get in the van, we were all there just to have fun but that you thought I could do it. I wanted to thank you for those words and helping to give me the courage and push I needed to have an amazing weekend! I learned A LOT about myself in that short amount of time but there are two things I will never forget about that weekend. First your definition of a "Hill" and second watching you take on those "hills". Your zest for life pushed me even more than I can say. Another huge thank you for helping me with the grant process and of course getting my fantastic new bike as that I can Always Keep Pedaling right along with you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Els & Simon you were both a huge piece of that weekend as well. Both of you always making us feel just like we belonged. Els you never let any one of us fall behind alone you were always riding right there with us and offering help if we needed it. Simon our trusty photographer extraordinaire! You helped not only AKP document the weekend but all of us as well. You always checked on us as you drove by to setup the next shot or in the case that we needed something you immediately stopped and helped us. All this so close to your wedding day too. We were lucky to have such caring support people with us for the weekend! You both certainly helped me get past my fear and move into having a fantastic time!

Erin & Jeffrey, my car pool buddies. It was so nice to be able to have company on our drive up and get to know each other before we got there. You were and continue to be so supportive. Both of you sharing your knowledge of biking with me making me feel slightly less anxious! I am so glad to have been able to spend that time with you, thank you so much for helping me, supporting me and making it such a great weekend!

Alyssa you are just this amazing ball of energy! I hopefully have already told you just how thankful I am to have you as a friend and how grateful I am for all the support you give me, but if not I just did again. Keep doing what you're doing cause you are fantastic! :)

Juliana it was so great to have you there that weekend because were someone else who was more than willing to share your knowledge about biking and as an added bonus you are a teacher! You were so friendly and welcoming just making me feel very comfortable. You are great at cheering me on and giving that little extra push to go a little further. Even now you still are encouraging even if it is through Facebook. So thank you for it all!

Gina Marie you are another firey one! You have an amazing sense of humor which definitely helped me out! You are also extremely encouraging both on the road while we were all having our individual struggles or even now when you post things on Facebook. You are just this smiling face that make everything better. Thank you for all your spirit and help!

Lauren you are another great motivator. That weekend you helped by telling us we were doing a good job or sharing some techniques that worked for you. Now you continue to be motivating by everything you do and giving your words through Facebook as well. Thank you for that!

Alexandra you were so nice and had some many ways of helping me feel like I was succeeding even when I was walking up a hill. It made all the difference in the world because at those moments is when you aren't really feeling so great about yourself. Thank you for providing that little extra touch to get me through!

Last and certainly not least is Chris. You were absolutely amazing the whole weekend. Overly supportive of everyone, always offering help, sharing your knowledge, being at the right moment on the road when we needed you. You even made due when there was a bat flying around your room. I learned so much about myself and of course about bikes and what to look for in getting my own as well as how to take care of them. Thank you so much for giving me the ground work for being self sufficient in biking!

There is also a huge thank you to anyone working with AKP and supporting AKP because that experience was life changing and of course getting my bike made the possibilities of how much I should push myself even greater! Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

3 More days until my three anniversary of being diagnosed! Stay tuned for more!

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