Thursday, July 23, 2009
The face of determination...
I admit it ... I am a Lance Armstrong Fan.
Nope. That really doesn't quite capture how I feel about this particular person. I am an admirer of this man's determination, strength, focus, consistency and desire. His passion to find a cure for cancer is a passion we share. His abilities and talents are legend.
Here's the other great side of this guy: he's human. He's not a machine, he's not a doper. He's fought a cancer that many thought would take his life. Hell, even his Cofidis Cycling Team back in the day dropped him like a hot potato because they were certain he was going to expired.
I have met Lance. We have ridden together 3 times. He wouldn't know me from any other fundraiser except for the photo I brought him of my Godson, dressed in his favorite yellow cycling jersey and autographed for Lance. I told Christian that I was going to go see Lance and get him his autograph. Christian didn't think it was fair that Lance wouldn't get his autograph so we printed out his picture...complete with yellow jersey and the IV pole with the bags of chemo entering his veins....and he signed it.
Lance told me "that was the smiling face of determination."
The next year Christian was gone.
Lance remembered him. He remembered that face and signed a yellow jersey directly to Christian. That jersey is still on a teddy bear that sits in my workout room as a reminder.... You gotta fight!!
Today I ran 12 miles. So many things were on my mind. Running is so difficult for me but I am improving. I thought about Lance in his 8th tour clawing his way onto the podium and up one of the few mountaintop stages he has never won in the tour. There would be no yellow jersey for him today...but his determination was inspiring. I thought about how hard Christian fought to survive. He told his father he wanted to "live forever"..and he does in all the work that many of us do to find a cure so no family has to go through what his family endured.
I thought about how easy this Ironman is compared to fighting for your life. When you put it in that perspective...a little pain is temporary.....
Hope rides again...Livestrong!