I’m not happy or am I?

I’m not happy with myself. Nor how I have been communicating with some of you on Facebook.

Nor am I happy that my mom and her coworkers are going through this situation. I am scared to be honest.

I need to back up just a bit.

2/13/07 my whole life changed and at first it could have been for the worst. My parents fought for me when I couldn’t speak, move, breath. I came into the hospital with a Glasgow coma scale of 3. Although doctors didn’t say it from what I know, upon doing research myself a score of 3 signifies death with a near 100% mortality rate.

Because of that the way I may act or cope with something may not be how you handle the situation. I worry a lot and I admit that but it really does seem that it annoyed some of you. And for that reason I do apologize. I grieve differently and it seems that I was backlashed each time I got a pushback. In fact that only fueled the act and my actions linger on.

I don’t want to say much but I can’t really help it now. The last few months with Greenlee were not joyous. I often dreaded going into work because I just knew that some hell was going to be placed on me that day. They wanted me to quit but I declined their offer because I wanted to work. I am not the type of person that likes to just sit back on Social Security. I am just not that type of person! I have always been a driven person and if I wasn’t, then please tell me how I got to where I am today? There are a few reasons why they may have wanted me to quit but I am starting to believe they were all influenced by one person. That person helped to turn Scott on me. When I started over 3 years ago Scott was someone that I could go to when I needed help. He was also in the military and so he could understand me. After one manager change, it just started to go downhill and I have my own speculation as to why but I will not disclose that here.

So now I am back to square one and taking it much harder than most. Not because I want to but rather it is just who I am now. Finding a job is difficult for many and throwing the factor that I am disabled makes it much harder. There’s things I can’t do and things I won’t do because of my safety and the safety of those around me. Then there are those things such as speaking that I am often talked out of and in turn I rely that message. Yes I realize that I am difficult to understand. But have you taken the chance to know my voice? The chance to know me for who I am?

I joined linked in earlier but I never really used it up until January 2018. It was scary to put myself out there but I did it. I realized soon that I am a source of inspiration for many. For those who think they can’t because of an illness or an injury. For those who just think that. I am going to continue to inspire there and we will see what will come out of it.

So please I ask you do not halt my process of grieving. It will end when I make it through the stages. I will try not to bring it up first when talking with you individually. Please help me through this; that is all I ask.

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Reflections on 2017

Wow! Where do I begin? It has been a great year, I have met a lot of new people and I have been a lot of places. I even went to Italy and improved my paracycling skills. I am still not accepting the T2 decision. On the other hand, I fully accept that I am not a T1. I am somewhere in between and I will need to be okay with that for now. My times have greatly improved and they can only go up from here.

I still inspire others with what I have done. That’s awesome to hear!

My health is what it will always be now.

I’m grateful for my mom and Ray for all that they have done and will do for me.  I’m grateful for friends and for family!

On a sad note, I lost my job with Greenlee that I have held successfully for 3 years and the last two months it seem to have gone very sour. I don’t believe for any moment that I was having performance problems; how can one have excellent reviews up to both two and three months prior and then all of a sudden when I ask for something I’m having problems? I honestly believe there is way more to this than I am being told and I need to get to the bottom of this one. For my sanity. For my self worth. For my closure. Greenlee is losing a hard working and dedicated employee! My disability has not only shaped me in how hard I work and how much effort I put in but also the effect that I have had on all of my coworkers.

In the meantime, this gives me time to regroup. Time to figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life. Cycling can only take me so far.

So as we head into 2018 I want to make a few resolutions.

1. I want to find closure with Greenlee

2. I want to find a job that I love. On a positive note my application with Trek Corporation for a Retail Financial Analyst has passed the initial phase and is now in the ‘screened’ phase. I sure hope this continues to move 3

. I want to deepen relationships with family members

My resolutions this year are short but I don’t feel that any more are necessary. I am happy where I am and only need a few more actions.

I am looking forward to a wonderful new year filled with growth and opportunities!

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Limitations, feedback needed?

The days seem to be shorter and I have begun to realize my limitations. 😦

Saturday started off with a 68 minute trike ride. Then it was a 2 hour drive to my Grandma’s for the Kloepfer Christmas party. Spent 3 hours there and then drove 2 hours home. An hour later I was getting picked up for my work holiday party. That went for about 4 hours but it was fun! I didn’t get to bed until after midnight and so I missed church. In fact I didn’t want to do anything.

I want to believe that this craziness will only last a few months but will it really?

I get up around 4 to get a ride in before work, go to work where it is crazy because it is the end of the year, have stuff after work and I don’t usually get to bed until 10. 😦

I am exhausted to  say the least and yet I’m wondering if everything I do is worth it? I know nothing happens overnight but I wonder if I will be good in the future? I’m not a quitter so if it is not going to happen, I need someone to tell me now please? I have coaches/trainers and I don’t think they will let me fail?

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This is a day when we are supposed to give thanks. Give thanks for friends and family. Thanks for the ability of life. Thanks for all our blessings.

Sure we can be thankful for many things and yet still feel sadness inside. When I see my mom play with my nephew sure it is joyous, Jacob is a ton of fun. And I’m really glad for my sister and her husband as they are starting a family. But then I wonder will I ever be able to? I still must be seated just to hold Jacob and that is only if the other person will give him up. I wonder if  ever could experience such joy of getting married, having kids, and starting a family?

But then I have the trike. I love it and being able to challenge myself to get better. Where I am now is no where I am supposed to be. And to be honest I seriously doubt that I will ever get there. Sure my times are great now but to even be in medal contention I have to shave off a whole minute just to reach others in that class. Someone seriously screwed up and they best change it or I am not going to be happy.

I’m grateful for my job with Greenlee and their understanding that it does take me more time to do something. Even though I am there more than most, it really has nothing to do with that; I prefer to be sure that the job gets done before leaving. Sure I don’t always get everything done and I have a huge feeling that these next few months are going to be nuts!

My mom has done a lot for me. Ray has as well. I don’t think I would ever get half as far if it were without them.

So as the day ends, just think of one thing; you can be grateful for many things but still .saddened by other thing.

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And the truth finally comes out!

After what I heard tonight, it made me even more upset. I would be fine with just believing that no one really knows and it was just accident. Now I know better!

You can go on and on about how school should have been cancelled but likewise I am also guilty because I was going to Rock Valley. You can go on and on about speed but maybe that driver wasn’t going that fast? Even the smallest amount of speed t-boning my vehicle could have created that much damage. Sure I’m lucky that by some force of nature and God I made my way to the passenger side. If not my injuries could have been much worse or even death. And yes that is a fact!

But I have to learn to look past all this. If it weren’t for all my injuries I may have never learned about Salute Inc, Ed Edmundson, and Sherrie Mccann at RIC. Afterwards I may have not known about Wounded Warrior Project or Ride 2 Recovery.Most importantly I may never have been introduced to Steven Peace, Carl White, or anyone else I may have met in the paracycling world.

What I have now IS reality. All the injuries may have led me here but who really knows?Life is as precious as what we make of it. We can go on living by believing false thinkings or we can face the true reality. It’s your choice!

I have accomplished so much these past almost 9 years, traveled to other continents, raced on a trike, made great memories, got in better shape, educated myself more, AND found my place in the world. What more could I ask for?

I could go on and on about what my lifecould have been. Sure it may have been better but I may never know. What I do know is that I love what I am doing now and no one could ever change that!

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As the days go by

As it was told to me tonight, I’ve suffered a few losses so far this year. The day I moved a very close friend of mine passed. I couldn’t wait to show her my new place when I first found out. But that never happened sadly.

Just before then I broke up with someone. We were going separate ways and I just felt  it was for the better.I’m sad to say that I’m hurting now and all I want is for him to come visit!

There have been other losses but they are not as significant. The battle is never really won with them. It keeps going and they will probably keep on it for a while.

Well I will honestly admit that when I started Greenlee almost a year ago, I was only going to stay a year to get back on my feet. Looking at it now it would be very hard to go and for that reason among a few others I am staying until I am fired. 😦 (No I was not fired!) I love what I’m doing and I am very excited to learn as much as I can learn. There is a light at the end of the rainbow and one day I will see it. Not to mention they are really supportive of me and my cycling endeavors. I don’t think that I am all that good so sometimes I wonder why? I sucked in South Africa (or at least I feel that way) so I’m wondering what the next year will bring?.

Either it all happens at once or nothing happens at all. As the saying goes, cycling started about the same time. At the time I wasn’t sure what to do. In fact I originally canceled the 2nd interview with Greenlee BECAUSE of cycling. After deciding my priorities needed to be straighter i went to that interview.  I figured I could do them both and I’m now more surer than ever that I can. I have Carl working with me on fitness and strength and Steve working on events. I just hope he doesn’t get too crazy because this is one job that I do not want to screw up!

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The challenge begins but it’s nothing that will stop me!

About a week ago when they told me that they were going to keep me as a T2 I was devestated. I’m sure it hindered my performance. I felt like I had let people down. I kept talking about these good times but they just didn’t happen. It was upsetting!

That was quickly turned around after talking with my coach. Zip Lining was the cherry on top. I conquered a lot in South Africa doing things I never imagined that I would be doing. I’m fairly sure that the early doctors would be shaking their heads in disbelief if they heard what the heck I was up to! I would go back if I was ever given the chance to!

So anyways I have heard a lot from a few people about this whole classification thing. I am keeping names silent to avoid calling them out. As I can say is that was probably the wrong thing to do. I now have a challenge to prove you wrong.

I was told the theory that since I was registered as a T2 by my nation that the international classifiers kept it like that. They didn’t have much time with me before they came to that decision. Many still feel that I am still a T1. Sure I can walk a few steps on my own and have good strength but if they knew my background then maybe they would look past that! After the two races I only had times consistent to that of a T1. I hope that they take these into consideration next time they see me.

But in the meantime I am stuck to train as a T2. All I can say is bring it! I am ready for you. If they do drop me back down to a T1 I will be unstoppable and I will be ready if they keep me as a T2.

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And the countdown begins…………

I leave in about 165 hours. I still can’t believe that I am going nor can I really believe it that many pulled through to help me get there.

I have flown many times before but this will be the longest. And this will be the first time out of this country. The Boundry waters do not count because I was in the woods/lakes area. I’m scared but I really hope nothing serious will go wrong. I have someone coming with me so I’m hoping that everything will be ok!

I have so many people rooting for me and I really hope that I don’t end up disappoint them. This will be my first international race so just getting here is a success on my part. I hope that I can at least place but if I don’t oh well. I’m hoping this will be one of many international races. I know that my times have greatly improved since Nationals but is it good enough?

My coach surprised with a skinsuit and a new uniform so I hope I don’t disappoint him either. In fact I’m sorry for all the questions lately. This is a step for me into the unknown and I want to make sure that I do it right.

I have to still pack but I’m thinking that will get done the day before I leave. I may end up forgetting something but oh well!

This will be quite an adventure and I am looking forward to every moment of it!

Then there is work and no I am not complaining! Last week I was approached about learning something new and it seems to be fairly straightforward. I’m just hoping that I remember how to do it after my week and a half vacation. I’m also hoping that this will lead to a promotion in the future but we will see.

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I’m defying the odds again!

When doctors told my mom told my mom to put me in a nursing home and get on with her life I obviously didn’t listen!

I was not supposed to walk again > I didn’t listen and went from a walker to a quad cane to a when on even surfaces a single pole cane to no cane for a very short distance.

I was not supposed to drive again > I now drive .

I wasn’t supposed to do well in college > I got the top grade in my class for calculus, a 3.99 GPA for my AS Accounting, a 3.98 for my BS Accounting, and a 3.95 GPA for my Master’s in Forensic Accounting!

I probably wasn’t supposed to work again > I  now can work a full time job with very few modifications.

I probably wasn’t supposed to ride a bike again > I went from a tricycle to  a recumbent to an upright trike to be  a National Champion in my first race post accident.

I wasn’t supposed to live on my own > 4 years later I am moving on!

I write this crying not because I am sad but because I will miss everyone here. But it is time to give others a chance to try! What can I accomplish next? The sky is the limit!

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Don’t limit yourself. Many people limit themselves to what they think they can do. You can go as far as your mind lets you. What you believe, remember, you can achieve.

No Limits! So much  can make up this but it can vary person to person.

I’m sitting here doing a lot of thinking. There is so much going on at times it is hard to believe!

I try to look back to the day that changed my life. I could be made or I could embrace it. I have had people tell me how inspirational they see me but I honestly don’t see it myself. I sometimes wish I could.  I can tell you it was difficult to relearn all of the thinks that uninjured adults take for granted. Yes I haven’t handled it the greatest.

but guess what? There are NO LIMITS! Anything and everything is possible.

I am going into the race this weekend definitely in the best shape I have ever been! Yes this even beats when I came back from the military OSUT (One station unit training). I have a lot of friends, family, and nearly half of Rockford cheering me on. I became a celebrity just by doing what I am doing. I didn’t think it was all that great at first but now there are no limits to what I can do.

When life gives you a box of lemons, make lemonade!

I could have just given up that day but I didn’t. I had family and friends by my side encouraging me. I had organizations such as Salute Inc, Wounded Warrior Project, and the Brain Injury Association of Illinois step up to help me out! Through their help I discovered paracycling and have moved up tricycles from the adult trike to the recumbent and now to the upright trike.

There are no limits! You can do whatever you put your mind to!

This weekend I want to do well but I understand that many are veterans at paracycling. I can’t be disappointed if I suck knowing that I will get better over time! I am going in it to win it!

There are no limits! What do you dream of?

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