The team has grown! We now have seven (and a half) riders for the C2C in a Day Challenge. Added to the original group we now have my Uncle Alun, Gareth and Robyn. It should be a nice mix of ages and abilities. It is also a nice mix of people who knew Bob in different ways, on different levels and for different lengths of time. I am not sure but I think for some people the impact that Bob’s death has had on me and others is more of a motivation than his actual death. Or maybe for some people it is the impact of the way in which he died. I know I haven’t mentioned the word before but I should; suicide. It is a word whose meaning has changed entirely to me in the last few weeks.
It is also a word that we should not and I will not be ashamed of. It does not define someone’s whole life. It does not take away their strength and achievements nor their fun and intelligence. However it does raise questions that may not arise otherwise. Questions which I cannot get answers to. I have been lucky enough not to feel much anger but I know that many people do and it is early days yet. If I do ever feel angry I will have to find a way to deal with it because it’s a damaging emotion that cannot be held on to. I am sure I will deal more with the issue of suicide in later blogs but for now I just wanted to get the word out there. My only comfort now is that Bob has found the peace he was seeking and that there will be no more worry for him.
The people left behind, and there are many of us, have to find our own peace. I truly believe that the only way to find that peace is to help each other. And so we come back to our cycling team (funny how everything seems to come round in circles nowadays). I forgot to tell you about the half! Sian’s wife Em will also be riding with us for at least part of the ride, she will then choose whether to continue as a rider or as support crew. I can’t believe more of us didn’t think of that option! Our team live in different parts of England and one rider lives in Denmark, so training together will not always be an option. We do hope to get a couple of weekends in where, at least some of us, can get together and ride. However much of our support and training plans will have to be remote. I am hoping we will all share tips, achievments and of course tails of cycling fails along the way. I want this ride to be filled with laughter (at least at the start), camaradarie and pride. All of the team should be proud that they have agreed to the challenge in the first place, anything after that is further achievment.
My Garmin bike computer arrived at the weekend so I now cannot use the excuse that ‘I might get lost’ not to get on the bike. Come to think of it the clocks changing has taken away the ‘It’s a bit dark’ excuse too! I really am going to have to get out and ride! And I will be on Thursday with two of my trusty teammates. I have decided to try to keep a record of my training miles and with four months to go who knows how many I might clock up (closest guess gets a Terry’s chocolate orange)?
I have a lot of targets at the moment and although training is the main one a big one is just getting through the day. I hate wishing the days away but you do start to do it; ‘If I can just get through Monday/the week/the weekend.’ The weekends seem to be the worst. I look forward to them but find them emotionally draining. By Sunday afternoon I am usually overcome by loneliness and desperately want to get back to work. It is not a loneliness born of actually being alone. I spent a fantastic few days with my best friend and her young son last week (so good to see the joy and innocence of a young life). I loved being around them and laughing with them. I also loved seeing my parents on Sunday and various other people all weekend. But still I felt utterly alone. I do not really know how to deal with that. Just make it to Monday I guess.
At least on Monday morning it is spin class time and that makes me smile again and sets me up for another week. And I couldn’t help but smile when a stall holder at a local food fayre decided to chat me up with the line “I can’t believe you are single. Do you enjoy being single? I would ask you out if I was single too.” I decided not to go in with the “No, I hate being single but as my partner is dead I don’t have much choice” reply. But the poor man looked seriously worried as my parents circled menacingly, waiting to jump in and protect me should I become upset. Family teamwork!
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