Wednesday, May 31, 2006
You are going to do awesome, wonderful, extraordinary, terrific, marvelous, super and just plain great on Saturday!!
Have fun and I will be thinking of you!!
Miss Chris after finishing
the 2005 Country Music Marathonin
in 5:36:10 (her debut marathon)!
Another rambling by Jill on Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
I know this is a bit belated, but I wanted to send a shout out to all the service men and women out there - past and present - and say:
Thank You for all that you did and Thank You for all that you do.
I especially want to recognize:
My Dad (Vietnam - Air Force)
Grandpa Ed (WWII - Air Force)
Grandpa Allen (WWII - Hanford Project)
my Great-Uncles (WWII)
Uncle Bob (Vietnam - Army)
Cousin Kelly (Afghanistan - Air Force)
and fellow blogger - Cagey (Iraq - Marines).
Another rambling by Jill on Tuesday, May 30, 2006
When I started training for my first triathlon I had to go out and buy a helmet. I have been riding bikes for years, but have never owned one. Yeah, I am of the era when kids didn't wear helmets!
So I went to the bike shop and looked at what they had, but wasn't too crazy about the choices. But I had to get one! I opted for a white one, but what I really wanted was one of the kid helmets. Now those are fun helmets. They have funky designs on them and are colored pretty. But, alas, I am an adult so I must settle for a plain one. Right? WRONG!!
I eventually made it to a craft store and bought some stickers to decorate it with. So for the past several months I have been riding around with butterflies, flowers, hearts, smiley faces and peace symbols all over my helmet. And they were just what I wanted.
Then the other day I was in another craft store and you know what I found? Self-adhesive rhinestones!! Too cool! So this weekend I added some to my helmet and here is the final result.
I know - I'm a little nuts!
Another rambling by Jill on Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Sunday, May 28, 2006
I did better on the nutrition yesterday, but not so good today! I will get better!
So far this weekend has been great. It has been a long time since my Saturday was not dedicated to biking and I was able to do fun stuff.
I made my way to the park by 6:30 for a 4 mile run with the TNT group. We started off with a short warm up run in the parking lot then we did some stretching then it was around the loop with a little extra to make the 4 miles. I took it easy. I had planned on doing 5/1’s but then I ran with someone for a bit so I just ignored my watch.
About 1.5 miles into it I met up with Jonathan, a TNT Honored Teammate, and we chatted for a mile or so. What a great kid! He is 17 years old and was diagnosed with T-cell Lymphoma 2 and a half years ago and just completed his chemotherapy 3 weeks ago. He is so happy to be finished with his treatment and is just loving life right now. You get excited just being around him! He is not taking his life for granted – like many people are (me included), and is so thankful for what he has been given. Some of the treatments he was on made him rather sick and weak (he even went into kidney failure on one chemo and almost died) so he wasn’t able to do a lot. He is making up for it now! By the time we started running he had already completed one loop (2.9 miles). He didn’t plan on doing another one, but he just couldn’t control himself, and ran/walked with various TNT participants. He plans on training for a marathon with TNT in the future, and is just waiting for his mom to decide on which one (she plans of training with him)!! He is such an inspiration and I feel honored to have met him.
After finishing up the run I went home for a quick shower so I wouldn't smell when I went to the salon for a trim.
Then it was home again for a quick nap before heading off to the theater to see X-Men III. I was meeting up with friends and they left me a ticket at the entrance with a guy named Raul. I made it to Edward’s theater, parked, went up stairs to theater 12 and asked the person if Raul was around. She didn’t know who that was, so, as I was going back down to the other level, I called my friend and asked her where she had left the ticket. She said the front entrance, I said up or down, she said there was only one level, I told her that theater 12 was on level two, she then told me I was at the wrong Edward’s theater. I was supposed to be at the one off I-10. *%&$%!!!! Make my way to the parking garage, to my car, to 59, then 610, then I-10 and eventually the correct Edward’s cinema. And when I finally make it to the entrance, Raul doesn’t know what I am talking about! Steam starts to come out of the ears!! Then Raul remembers and lets me in. MORON! Make it to theater 12 just as the last preview is ending and am able to watch the entire movie!! I enjoyed it. Wonder when installment IV will be coming out?!
After the movie I called up some other friends participating in a softball tournament and met up with them so I could do some cheering. Then it was home for bed.
Today I went out to the ball fields again and cheered some more then came home and napped! Exhausting day! Tomorrow the apartment will be cleaned. What joy!
Another rambling by Jill on Sunday, May 28, 2006
Friday, May 26, 2006
I know I said the nutrition thing would start immediately, well....
Someone brought donuts this morning and he even bought the lemon filled ones especially for me!!
And then a friend of mine took me to Pappasitos for a belated birthday celebration. We had margaritas (on the rocks with salt, or course!), chips with salsa and queso, and then beef fajitas!
Yea - me bad!!
Tomorrow I will do LOTS better!! I swear!!
On another note, Sherri asked what "truing" meant in regards to your bike. When your wheel is not "true" it will wobble side to side and, in my case, was rubbing against one of the brake pads. In instances like this - tightening a spoke or two with a special tool (a spoke wrench) will most likely correct the problem. But when you actually have damage to the wheel or rim, the bike shop is the place to go. When Rich "trued" my wheel he tightened one of the spokes which pulled the wheel back into proper alignment. This website (there are many) gives a pretty good description of the process.
Another rambling by Jill on Friday, May 26, 2006
I have said this before, and I am saying it again. I NEED A TRAINING PLAN. I have been doing a less than stellar job of getting in shape and with the Chicago marathon only 5 months away and then Tulsa a month after that I need to get on the ball.
Last night (or should I say early this morning – it was 2 am) I was reviewing the TNT training schedule. It is set up as follows:
Monday – timed run
Tuesday – track / speed work
Wednesday – rest
Thursday – timed run
Friday – timed cross-training
Saturday – long run
Sunday – rest
Well, I need to do more. I need to throw in a couple days of strength and core training along with a few more days of cross-training (specifically swimming and biking).
I am thinking of:
Monday – timed run, strength, core, cross-train (swim)
Tuesday – track / speed work, cross train (bike)
Wednesday – strength, cross-train (swim)
Thursday – timed run, cross-train (bike), core
Friday – cross-train (swim)
Saturday – long run
Sunday – rest with the possibility of some cross-training (bike)
Bike rides will consist of riding along the bayou anywhere from 20 to 30 miles.
Swims will consist of laps anywhere from 1,000 to 2,000 meters which might or might not include kicks and pulls.
Strength will consist of legs, back, arms, shoulders, and glutes all in the same day.
Core will consist of using the stability ball and various types of crunches.
Timed runs will be anywhere from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours (times will get progressively longer until the taper). I might include running hills along the bayou, too.
Track / Speed work will consist of meeting up with TNT and doing the assigned work. Sometimes I might head over to Rice U and do the stairs at the stadium.
Long runs will start at 4 miles and max out at 21/22. I will do most of my long runs with TNT.
I will also include more stretching into my routine.
And my daily nutritional intake needs to improve. I will try harder to include more fruits and veggies in my diet. My major downfall when it comes to food is sweets. I LOVE chocolate and ice cream. I am trying to lessen the amount of sugar and refined carbs I consume. I have started buying multi-grain pasta. When I buy yogurt I buy organic or ones made with sugar (I try not to buy things sweetened with high fructose corn syrup). I DO NOT DO DIET!! Artificial sweeteners taste nasty and leave an awful after taste. I rarely drink sodas, and my beverage of choice is water. I only drink alcohol socially, but sometimes I drink too much! I need to cut down on that – wasted calories. One or two drinks is sufficient every once and awhile. I eat out way to much (lunch). I need to bring my meals with me to work. Some weeks I am really good and bring everything with me. Other times, not so good. I do try to eat healthy when I do go out though! But I could do better.
So those are my plans. Better training and better nutrition.
So, what do you think? Is there something I could be doing better? Or do I need to change things around a bit?
The nutrition part of this plan will start immediately. The major training part will start after Tahoe, but I will be doing some light training prior.
Another rambling by Jill on Friday, May 26, 2006
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Saturday was our last group training ride until Tahoe. We did an easy 45 miles up in northwest Houston. There were virtually no hills and the wind wasn’t too bad!!
After about mile 30 I kicked up my pace a bit and Wardo and I rode the rest of the way together, leaving the rest of the group in the dust!! Yeah, right – I just wanted to be one of the first ones back to Debi's house so I wouldn't have to wait for a shower!
After everyone finished - the party began. Coach Alan boiled up a couple pots of crawfish with all the fixings (potatoes, corn, mushroom, etc). YUMMY!!! And SPICY!! My mouth and lips were burning after that last ear of corn!
We all pigged out that day! People brought so much stuff it was amazing. There were multiple dips with chips and crackers, then salads, fruit, veggies, rice, fried Twinkies with currant jam (yea, fried Twinkies!!), and then a multitude of deserts! And that was all washed down with beer or your beverage of choice!
After the gorge fest, we sat around talking, drinking and playing in the pool. It was a great day!
Coach Rich even brought his bike stand and cleaned bikes for those who wanted it. And I did! Not that my bike was that dirty, but I wanted to learn how to do a better job. Time to go to the store and buy some cleaning tools. Rich even "trued" one of my wheels. That will be helpful in Tahoe! No more brake rubbing against the rim.
Sunday was uneventful. I was recovering from the day before. Or that was my excuse, anyway!! We are in injury prevention mode for Tahoe. Do not want to hurt myself!
MD Anderson sets up an employee softball league every year, so I signed up for a team. Last Monday was our first game and we won! The other team forfeited! Last night was our second game, and we won that one, too! And this time the other team showed up. I played left center and didn’t too badly. I am not the greatest player compared to some, but I have fun. That is the point.
After that game, another team needed some players so I played with them. This time I played first base. I am not used to that position, but I did okay. I caught the ball and was able to get a couple people out and my hitting was okay. I just wish I could learn to hit the ball in different places - I kept hitting to short stop.
The only problem with playing softball - it is kind of hard to play in injury prevention mode! As I was going for a ball I slipped in the dirt and twisted my foot/ankle. I am such a klutz. After the game I had a couple errands to run, but when I got home I pulled out a bag of “Grade A Fancy Baby Lima Beans” from the freezer and put it on my foot after taking 3 Advil. It feels a little better today, but is still sore. It didn’t hurt when I rode my bike this morning; it is when I walk that I feel it. At least there are no games next week!
Tonight I am going to buy the new Dixie Chicks cd. Can’t wait to blare it in my car stereo with the windows down!! Maybe I shouldn’t. I live in Texas and am in injury prevention mode!!
Another rambling by Jill on Tuesday, May 23, 2006
Friday, May 19, 2006
This picture was just too cute not to post!!
Peter Cihelka / The Potomac News
Goslings try to chase away a swallowtail butterfly after it tried several times to land on the young Canada geese May 16th at Occoquan Regional Park in Lorton, VA.
I found it on The Week In Pictures.
Another rambling by Jill on Friday, May 19, 2006
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Saturday didn’t start off too good.
First, I set my alarm for 5:30 am so I would have plenty of time to get to the ride start. The alarm went off, but I hit the snooze button and jumped out of bed at 6:30!! Mad dash around the apartment to get everything together and out the door by 6:50.
I sailed along the freeway and as I approached The Woodlands I gave Debi (another mentor) a call to ask the turn-off I needed to take – yeah, I forgot the map! Debi was late, too, so I thought all would be okay. She gave me the name of the exit I needed to take and I kept sailing.
There sure was a lot of traffic on the road for a Saturday morning, and as I was passing a Mustang in the far right/outside lane I noticed a white pick-up truck in front of the Mustang. As I passed the Mustang, the truck started going into the shoulder. Made me wonder. Then it started going into the grass. Made me really wonder what the guy’s problem was. Then the truck hit the guard rail head-on and eventually the cement barricade. Debris started flying everywhere and then all of a sudden the metal from the guard rail was in the middle of the freeway. I swerved to miss, but the Mustang was not able. I pulled over to the inside shoulder and called 911.
As I looked back over at the wreck lots of cars and trucks pulled over to check on the driver of the truck. I called Coach Eric and told him about the situation and that I would be late. I then made it across the freeway and to the scene. As I approached the truck, which was lying on its side with the hood and roof caved in, I asked on of the people who had stopped if he made it. And miraculously he had. They were trying to keep him calm until the emergency crew could get him out. I then approached a trooper and told him I witnessed the accident. He asked me to tell him what happened then asked me to write it all down. After this, I was sent on my way.
I made it back to my car and called Coach Eric again. They were almost ready to leave so they left me a map on one of the cars and said they would ride a little slow. I finally made it to the ride start, got ready and took off. I was at least 20 minutes behind and I had a lot of ground to cover.
Coach Eric said to not push myself too hard, he didn’t want me to burn out too early! I tried to take it easy, but I wasn’t successful all the time!! Anyway, I eventually caught up with the group as they were leaving the first rest stop. I filled up my water bottles grabbed a couple Oreos and then took off with Patrick, who had graciously waited for me!
The rest of the ride was great. The day was beautiful! There was wind, but then when isn’t there any wind?! And of course there were hills. Lots of hills!! The only crimp in the ride was when we were riding through Sam Houston National Forest. A controlled burn was being done and you could see the smoke for miles. A bunch of us were worried about riding through it, but it wasn’t as bad as it looked. There was tons of smoke, but we only had to ride in it for a couple miles due to the wind direction.
I did try out some of the tips on how to make my stroke more efficient. It seemed like it helped. Only time will tell. I will get there, eventually.
By the time I finished my tripometer read close to 81 miles. And it was a tough 81 miles. I was tired. A few of us relaxed around our SAG vehicle (a motor home!) and drank a refreshing beverage. I had water! See, every once and awhile I am good!
After that it was home with a quick stop at my friend’s fundraiser. No bugs left. Dang, because I was HUNGRY!
I thought about going to another friend’s party, but time was getting short and I was not up for another 45 minute drive that late in the day. Oh well, I wouldn’t have been that much fun because I was so tired. Next time.
Another rambling by Jill on Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Friday, May 12, 2006
Yesterday I did 4 miles (two loops around the golf course). The first 2 miles were great. No problems, felt fine. The next two miles were a different story. Didn't do too well on the second loop. Need to work on that!
Tomorrow is the last long training ride with the TNT cycle group. After this weekend the mileage starts dropping and then it is off to Tahoe for America's Most Beautiful Bike Ride on June 4th - only 3 weeks away. I am not too nervous, but I am a little scared of those "hills." All will be good. All will be good. I need to keep repeating that to myself!
On Sunday, I think I am going to go on a fun 30 mile ride that a local bike shop (Bike Barn) is organizing. They are going to ride around Houston and make a stop at the Houston Grand Criterium. I have never seen a bike race before, so this should be interesting.
There seems to be a lot going on in Houston this weekend. Right now I am listening to the sounds of the Grand Prix of Houston. They set the track up down at Reliant Park. I live about 3-4 miles from there (as the crow flies) and can still hear those cars zooming around the race track. Can you imagine how loud it is right there?
Some TNT friends of mine are having a crawfish boil fundraiser this Saturday. If I am able to get back to town before the event is over I plan on heading over and having me some bugs. But if not, there is always next weekend. That is when we are having our TNT cycle party. It should be a blast. We are planning on mud bugs with all the fixings, beer, and assorted other dishes. Yum!! What a way to finish off the season!
Another rambling by Jill on Friday, May 12, 2006
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Sunday was rather uneventful. I lazed around and watched Pride and Prejudice. What a great chick flick!! I think I might have to go out and buy the book.
Monday, I thought about going running. And that is as far as I got!! Bad!
Tuesday I met up with some friends at Memorial Park and did some loops. But before I could do that I had to rush home to clean my bike so it would be nice and clean. Because you know I just had no time to clean it the past two days!!
Anyway, I ended up doing about 12 miles and kept thinking about how I need to improve my pedaling stroke. I think I put to much effort in the pushing resulting in my toes and such falling asleep. Do I need to concentrate on pulling more? That is what someone said to do when I told them my toes go to sleep. But I think that is more to take the pressure off the foot for a bit so the blood can start circulating. I was trying to find some stuff on the Internet about how to be more efficient with my pedaling and couldn’t find much. The only thing that really stood out to me was the “scrape your shoes off” technique.
I asked Dan about it on Tuesday and he suggested the same thing. He said that you are most efficient from the 1 to 5/11 to 7 position of the stroke if you look at it like you are looking at a clock (does that make sense?). The hardest part of the stroke is from 11 to 1/1 to 11 or 5 to 7/7 to 5 – the top and bottom part of the stroke. He said to help with this, when you reach the downward part of the stroke put your heal down so your foot is more parallel to the ground and pretend you are scraping off the bottom of your shoe.
I have tried it a couple times since (on my mountain bike in tennis shoes) and I did notice a difference. I sure did feel some different muscles when I did it, too!! I will really have to put it to the test this Saturday – we are doing 80 miles up in the Magnolia/Anderson area – hilly!!
After the short ride and lesson it was time for dinner – Los Cucos on Memorial. I love that place. Actually, I love their fish tacos and margaritas!! I was going to refrain from the margaritas, but too many people know that I like them so when I came back to the table after washing up the guys had ordered me a rita on the rocks with salt! They know me too well!!
Yesterday I didn’t do anything. A couple weeks ago my mother went to a nutritionist and since then she has been trying to do some of the things the nutritionist recommended. One of these things is semi-fasting for 36 hours every week or so. During this time you are allowed to eat or drink only one type of fruit (must be non-citrus). Well yesterday my mother calls me up and wonders if I would like to do it with her and Tom (step-dad). I agree! Have to be supportive. That is the reason I didn’t do anything. I was STARVING!! All I had to eat yesterday was apples and applesauce. Do not think I will be doing that again anytime soon!
Tonight I am going running. Just haven’t decided if I am running around the golf course or meeting up with friends at Memorial Park. I think I will do the golf course, that way I do not have to get in the car and drive! And I have to make Cowboy Caviar (love this stuff!) for a work retreat tomorrow. And if I meet up with friends that will not get done!!
Another rambling by Jill on Thursday, May 11, 2006
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Well, I did it. I signed up for the Tejas Tri. It is a sprint distance of 0.5mi swim, 13mi bike and 3mi run. I am not worried about anything except for the run. I am sooooo going to suck at the run! I haven't been doing much of it since I was given the okay by the doc. I have never been fast, but I am really slow compared to what I was a year ago. Oh well, have to deal. I will get better - eventually. I am going to try and not expect too much from this race. I just want to start getting back into the tri and running swing of things after 6 months of concentrating on the bike.
Another rambling by Jill on Tuesday, May 09, 2006
Monday, May 08, 2006
Saturday started off absolutely wonderfully!
First, I wake from a deep sleep and look at my alarm clock to see what time it is. No numbers. Hmm. Fall back to sleep, but woke back up and look at the clock again. It says 2:13. Fall back to sleep, again. Wake up again. No numbers on the clock. Think about falling back to sleep, but then what happens if the power does not come back on and I do not wake up in time. Get up, get the cell phone, set the alarm for 4:00 am, and try to go back to sleep. Not happening. Finally get out of bed at 3:30, get the flash light and start putting things together. Then I notice it is not completely dark outside. The lights in the garage are on. I call the apartment complex and get no answers, just that they are working on the problem. Go out and wander around the garage to see if it is just my building without power or are other buildings affected. Everything on the complex was without power except the garages. Weird. Go back inside and call the power company and was told that a car had hit a pole and they were working to fix the situation and the power should be back on in a couple hours. My first thought - f'ing drunk driver! But then you never know, it could have been caused by a completely sober person out at 2:15 am on a Saturday morning! Next thought, what if the power does not come on and it gets really hot in the apartment? What happens to Beazer?
I finish getting everything ready, take a shower and then the power comes back on!! Yea!! I do not have to make a trip up to north Houston to drop Beazer off at Noni's (my friend and ferret sitter) prior to heading out to Katy for the ride start.
Before I left my apartment I saw my first flash of lightning. When I was loading up my bike, it started to rain. When I got on the freeway, it started to pour. And the weather just got worse. The rain was horrendous. My wipers were going as fast as they could and I could hardly see. Along with most of the other drivers, I slowed to 25 mph, got in the right hand lane and put my flashers on. The wind was trying to push me into the center lanes and there was lightening and thunder all around. It was crazy!!
Eventually the rain lessened and I made it to Katy Mills Mall. I met up with the other TNT people and we hung around. The weather cleared for a few moments and we all gathered for a team picture. Then the rain started again and we huddled in our vehicles a little longer. Finally the ride was ready to begin. We took another team picture (this time with our bikes!) and headed for the start line. It was pretty short!! The weather kept many cyclists away, but the die hards showed up and we crossed the start line at 8:30 - after a 1.5 hour rain delay.
The riding was wet, to say the least!! I had thought about buying a rain jacket before the start, but I was already wet and it would just make me hot. So I didn't. Probably a good idea.
I rode with Debi M. (a fellow mentor) for the first 45 miles or so. We had a good time chatting, stopping at the rest stops and cheering on the TNT participants. We picked up Becky at the third rest stop so I didn't feel so bad leaving Debi alone, and I took off. Not that I am fast or anything, just a little faster than Debi! By then the roads were starting to dry up and the sun was making an appearance. Finally! I was getting tired of road spray!
I pulled over at RS#4 and chatted with fellow TNT participants and got back on the road. Next stop, TNT lunch stop at mile 70.
I caught up with Kerry and Erik (TNTers who will be going to Tahoe with me). I chatted with them for a bit then continued on my way. Passed a couple guys going up a hill, thought nothing of it, and pedal on. Then all of a sudden there is this guy at my side - one of the ones I had passed on the hill. He said he had noticed me before, thought I was a strong rider and asked me how long I had been riding. You know what I think?! He caught up with me because he couldn't handle being "chicked." And what made it worse - I wasn't a svelte, muscular chick!! He was being passed by a soft, cushy chick!!
We chatted. I told him about TNT and my training. He told me about his. He said his friend was slower than him, but he thought that was due to their age difference. He was 28 and his friend was 38. If he only knew how old I was!! I didn't tell him. I didn't want to completely ruin his day!!
I made it to the lunch stop and chatted some more with the TNT folk. But didn't want to lounge around too much. I was getting tired of being out there.
Eventually I went on my way. I was hoping I could catch up with some more participants. And I did, at the next rest stop! We chatted, we laughed. Everyone was having a great time!
Then it was back on the road for the final 17 miles.
I passed a guy on the side of the road with a flat and slowed to ask if he needed help. He didn't so I continued on my way. He eventually passed me going up a hill and we chatted a bit and he told me how he was trying to catch up with his partner. He did and I passed them going up another hill. You are wondering why am I telling you this. I will get to that in a bit.
Anyway, I continue on and eventually enter the city limits of Shiner. I ride past the brewery, over a wooden bridge and get gassed by a diesel truck who thinks it is funny to ride up on a rider, rev his engine and engulf them in black smoke. I flipped the mother f***er off! Made me feel better! Then I see the finish line!! Hallelujah!!
I cheer in the final riders and as I was making my way over to some TNT participants, one of the guys I had passed going up that hill comes over. He tells me thanks for pulling him the rest of the way in. He was tired and after I passed him it gave him the incentive to push it. He left his friend behind and tried to keep up with me. He even said his friend passed him in one of the SAG vehicles! What do you say to something like this? "I didn't know I was helping you, but your welcome!"
I am not sure what to think of all these "compliments." I do not think of myself as that strong of a rider. I am not that fast. And on this ride I took my time! I was slow! I stopped at all the rest stops. I took long breaks! I was just out there making sure all the TNT participants had a good time. And I even felt a little guilty about leaving some of them behind. Because ultimately this was about them.
This was their event. The one they had trained so hard for. The one they had raised money for. And they all did a WONDERFUL job!! I am so proud of all the TNT participants who crossed that finish line. They have a lot to be proud of. What a huge accomplishment!! They have made a difference!!
"We cannot do all the good that the world needs, but the world needs all the good that we can do."
p.s. Bunnygirl - there were lots of love bugs, but I do not think nearly as many as you had on your Road to Bugville. Maybe the weather, maybe because it was earlier in the season. But I am thankful, the weather was bad enough!!
Another rambling by Jill on Monday, May 08, 2006
Thursday, May 04, 2006
Today, I was waiting at the end of one of the skybridges at work and noticing all the people going by – either walking or taking the little golf cart shuttles. As the time passed the more I wanted to cry. You see, I work at one of the largest (and greatest) cancer institutions in the world. Normally I am holed up in my little cubby behind a computer, not getting out that much except for lunch and meetings.
But today I sat and took the time to notice the patients and visitors. I haven’t done that in quite sometime and it humbled me.
They are all so brave.
I saw a gentleman gently helping his wife into a wheelchair, place her feet on the little foot rests and then carefully drape a handmade afghan around her shoulders. I watched as a lady made sure her husband was able to climb onto the golf cart successfully and then watched as he picked up his leg with his hand to guide it up to where he was sitting. I listened to the rattle of a gentleman breathing through his trach tube. And then I started thinking about my life and how much it is affected by this horrible disease.
My job consists of putting together tools (order sets, guidelines, etc) to assist physicians treat their patients. I live in an apartment complex where some patients stay if they are undergoing long term care. I volunteer for an organization that raises money for cancer research and patient services. Five members of my immediate and extended family have had some kind of treatment for various types of cancer. Four members of my TNT cycling team are cancer survivors (and they are some of the fastest people on our team!!).
I am not sure why I took the time to think about all this. Maybe it was because yesterday my mother told me that a friend of the family had lost his battle with lung cancer. He was only 56. He will be missed. Susan, you are in my thoughts. May the memory of Mike always bring a smile to your face and never diminish.
Another rambling by Jill on Thursday, May 04, 2006