Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Ride Like the Wind

Mike had another incident on his bike the other day, although concerning, it wasn’t as serious as the last one (Look Away, I’m Hideous). He had some trouble steering around a corner, over the sidewalk and into the bike lane and unfortunately, was unable to stop his bike before riding into the side of a big black truck. Thankfully, the truck was almost at a stop as it was approaching a stop sign and no one was hurt…well, physically no one was hurt, but Mike’s ego may have been a little damaged. I was with him this time and saw the whole thing happen and was frustrated for Mike as I watched him and the man driving the truck exchange a few words. Mike got upset and rightfully so. Just a few short months ago, he was working two jobs, running 10Ks, bench pressing 225lbs, and he was able to leap tall buildings in a single bound and now he is trying to explain to some insensitive person in a black truck that he hasn’t been drinking. Anyway, I am now a little worried about him riding on the busy roads in our neighbourhood. He likes to ride his bike. He feels good when riding a bike. Like I mentioned before, Mike was a runner, but certain symptoms of ALS have stopped him from running, and even walking sometimes. Mike has hyper reflexes, he also experiences rigid movement, limited range of motion and muscle weakness. But on his bike, he feels great. I’m a spinning (group cycling) instructor and I can’t keep up with him. He rides like the wind. So needless to say, he is out on his bike every day. I go with him most of the time, but sometimes I can’t. Trying not to be obvious about my concern, the other day when he said he was going for a ride I insisted he wait for me, so I could go with him. He looked at me and said “You want to come with me because you are worried about me, aren’t you?” I insisted I wasn’t worried, and that I just wanted to be with him, which was true, but he was also right. Since then, we have gone for a number of bike rides, and I have made sure I’m available to go along every time. He says, “You’re just coming so you can catch me if I fall.” I want to go with him so I can save him from the evil traffic and the nasty sharp corners and the speeding cars and the drivers who aren’t paying attention. I want to warn him of any hazards and catch him if he falls. The only problem is I am totally incapable of doing all those things. Not to mention, he has always been the one who protects me, the one who saves me, the one who catches me when I fall.
Soon after his diagnosis, Mike started to thank me in advance for taking care of him. I told him he would do the same for me, that he would do anything for me and I would do anything for him, and I reminded him that we are a team. I wrote in my journal that if Mike does have this terrible disease, it would be my great honour to take care of him. Last night as I laid his leg on my lap and massaged his foot, I thought to myself that there wasn’t anything better I could do with my time. There wasn’t anything at that moment more noble that I could think of to do right then for my best friend, the love of my life, my number one team mate.
Believers look up - take COURAGE! The angels are nearer than you think. - Billy Graham

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