I first apologize for the few days that I’ve been AWOL from posting. But, I think you can imagine that my getting back to the classroom has occupied alot of my mental bandwidth; it has and will continue to do so! Ay carumba? I’ve been attending meetings, meeting new colleagues, and setting my classroom back up these past four days.
About 50 minutes ago, I took this photo while I was parked on a large boulder in the Schuylkill river while I was out on the kayak. Being on that rock, separated from the world by flowing, dark water, I felt as close to the feeling of being on the road somewhere in Iowa as i felt in about a week. No, this isn’t about Iowa.. Iowa is heaven, but still! (field of dreams reference) I’ve been thrust back in normal life, and you can bet I have times when I wish the journey was still going on. I love adventure.
Traveling by bicycle thousands of miles, with a mission to speak with as many people as possible and to inspire even more has been heavenly. To be devoted to something thats both part of you and well, distinctly separate, you overlook tiny things. Things like what your own problems are, how tired you are, even something like how much your adventure will end up costing you. They didn’t matter. The only responsibility I had was to everyone else, to make them smile, and maybe, ideally, think about how a bicycle helmet can help in avoiding a complete life change due to a brain injury.
I was lucky in :so: many ways. It still continues to make me upset, knowing that I could easily merely :forget: that I’ve had a brain injury because of how well I’ve returned to my previous goals and lifestyle. I managed to throw sand in the face of danger and doubt, strapping up my bicycle shoes and pedaling towards the unknown! Call it what you will, but with my attitude, I’ll call it luck.
Know what’s funny? I still haven’t added up all the miles that it took for me to arrive on the east coast. Hours? Too many. Days? 56 (that’s an easy one). Flats? 15. People spoken with? Easily approaching 1000. News articles or media attention to the mission: probably 15. ‘livestrong’ bracelets on my wrist now? 6! States crossed (NOT counting the 5 miles through West Virginia)? 11. Hospitals/brain injury support groups/associations/research institutes met with: 15. I’m blown away by what I can tell everyone I’ve accomplished.
But I’m still modest.. I can’t wait until the documentary is finished and you can see another aspect and view of what I had to go through! I much prefer that people see things for themselves than my telling them. But, I’ll still talk your ears off!
On that subject, I’ll talk a little more. But this time, in so cold, I’m like 0 Kelvin, or for you non-geeks, absolute zero. Brain injury survivors and organizations need all of our help! After meeting so many different yet connected people in the brain injury community, I developed one simple conclusion: we need light-years of help. From better research about brain injury prognosis, to health insurance allowing and funding longer care, to increasing the number of rehabilitation centers in rural areas and countless others, the list is long. I beg you one simple request: spread the message. That’s clearly what I am trying to do too.
I’m still urging you to keep checking back here- I’m going to keep updating to let you know :exactly: what I’m doing to support the BI community.
Soon, I’m going to give out free bottles of water to bike riders riding on the trail who aren’t wearing helmets… I’m sneaky! When they get handed the water, I’ll barrage them with facts about the effectiveness of helmets, in hopes that they start wearing one. Like my idea?? If you do, donate some bottled water! 🙂