I’ve decided to participate in an experience that raises funds for a great cause, and I need your help. In just a few more days I’ll be riding my bike in Pelotonia which is a charity ride to benefit the James Cancer Hosptial at Ohio State. This year, the trek journeys from Columbus, Ohio to my hometown of Gambier…and back; a two day ride totaling over 155 miles. The following letter I wrote to my ‘8 year old self’ will make the reasons I am taking this journey very clear. Before reading it, please take a moment to reflect on the ways Cancer has already effected and has the potential to effect your life and the lives of the ones you love. Please join the fight against this terrible disease by clicking on the donation link below and allowing me to ride for someone you wish to honor.
Every single dollar counts; your support is greatly appreciated.
Dear 8 year old me,
It is over the next two years that you will form the core of who you aspire to be. In this classroom, with these friends, the particularly shy and insecure boy that you are will transform.
Your ideas will be important.
Your work will be rewarded.
Your sense of the world will expand.
Your belief in humanity will prevail.
Your awareness of feelings, hopes, and dreams will fuel your generosity.
A soothing voice will talk you out of a painful asthma attack…many times.
And although you’ll hate being different, ‘different’ will be celebrated.
You’ll remember poems, line by line, for at least the next 25 years.
You’ll know it’s perfectly attainable to become an astronaut, and perfectly acceptable to fail.
You will feel capable and bright.
You will fall in love with writing.
You’ll be encouraged to be a class clown
You’ll do all these things, and so much more, because of the beautiful soul that welcomes you, by name, each morning. Her name will be Mrs. Geiger, and she will conduct her life with grace, dignity, compassion, and encouragement.
Before you know it, you’ll be a middle schooler sticking up for someone being picked on.
You’ll be a high schooler writing fictional essays for college entrance exams.
You’ll be a twenty something working in inner city schools.
And then you’ll be in your early 30’s, heartbroken, that you will never get to tell that teacher, Mrs. Geiger, how much she truly meant to you. It will be ever so important then to remind the world that we can’t stop fighting Cancer and we cannot let someone’s legacy be forgotten.
Have purpose and ride your bike as far as your legs can carry you.