Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Chris's Surgery Day

Checking in. Man, this place looks all too familiar! Chris just had to copy me didn't he?


And with Chris being the Chris that he is.....he decided to lay UPSIDE down in the bed. All the nurses and doctors that came in were like "WHAT!?" Apparently they have never had a patient do that. Chris was only trying to elevate his leg while waiting for all the pin pricks, stabs and questions.


Chris in his OR gown ready to rumble. I think that style of wear looks great on him!


Once they wheeled him into surgery I headed to Costco to load up on the fruits and veggies. All the doctors and nurses were surprised by that too; they assumed I was going to be waiting outside the OR for him. Or not!! I gots things to do people! Plus when Chris dumped me off for surgery back in July he went and a taught a Spanish class. Payback is rough sometimes! Ha ha!

The surgery was short and sweet. Think the doctor knocked it out in about an hour and everything went super well and as expected. The deltoid ligament did NOT have to be sewn back on either as it went into place on its own.

Chris was pretty out of it afterwards as you can see from the placement of the straw. : )

Afterwards Chris hoarded all the Fig Newtons they offered him as he had not eaten since the night before and it was now 5pm. He was super psyched to go to Cafe Rio and get a big ole gut bomb burrito and all the nurses begged us not to do that. They said that it was a bad idea as the stomach can suddenly revolt. Whatever, we did it anyway and Chris was fine. Hells bells, I walked out of surgery and went to freaking Quiznos for goodness sake. Ate the whole thing too and was hungry later even.

Everything was fine and dandy with his surgery and now........let the healing begin.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Driving Home

After the race yesterday I went back to our buddies place in Santa Barbara and prepared myself for the lovely task of packing our entire car up full of 2 bikes, 3 boards, cooler, 4 kites and what seemed like 1000's of other items to include luggage - all IN the car. We had enough stuff for the 4-5 weeks we were going to be gone and after 2 hours of packing I still wasn't done. Eeek.

I left the rest of the packing for the morning, hit Trader Joes on the way out and started my journey back to Utah.

Chris had his consult today and they scheduled his surgery for tomorrow which meant I really needed to boogie home.

Turns out Chris did more than everyone thought he did after the Ankle Surgeon took more x-rays. Isn't that always the case though? We kind of expected the doctor to find more actually. So he has one good break in his fibula (NOT your shin bone) a piece of bone that popped off near the deltoid ligament (near ankle) and a deltoid ligament that was all wrapped and bundled up disattached from the bone (part of the reason Chris's ankle was just hanging there). Ooooooh yuck!!!

The outlook for Chris is 4 days after surgery to elevate, ice and move only if the house is on fire. Then 2 months of non weight bearing where he will be on crutches. Then at 3.5 months have another surgery to remove the screw that they will stick across the tib/fib bone tomorrow. Plates and screws for the fibula are necessary as well. The doctor is hoping that by getting all the bones back in place and essentially pulling traction on them that the deltoid ligament will snap back into its spot and that he won't have to suture that onto the bone. Ooooooh yuck!!

Chris is looking at 6 months until he is back on the water and/or snow as his strong self again. Wow, that is not a short amount of time but we will work through it.

I got home from Santa Barbara in 11 hours and 8 minutes total including stops. Things are always a race for me...googlemaps said it would take me 11hr 45 minutes with no stops so I had to beat that time of course!. And my time was even with 25 minutes stuck in Vegas construction on I-15 going 20 mph! Yeah, I wasn't going slow but I made it home safe.

Thought this semi that I saw today was pretty funny. After driving so long it kind of messed with my head when I saw it.


A sliver of a moon as I made my way across Utah.


Surgery tomorrow for Chris. Oh joy.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

US Cup West #5 - Los Olivios, CA



Today I woke up on THE WRONG side of the bed. I was crabby Kathy and wasn't nearly as perky as I was the day before when I pre - rode the course. Oh yeah, the course the day before....way better than last year. Last year I didn't race it but I did pre-ride it with my cast on for my broken thumb. I determined that it was too cracked and bumpy making it extremely uncomfortable for my broken body parts so I didn't race here in 08. Had this course been in this same condition last year, I would have likely raced. This was the course last year as some of you may recall.



And this year it was SUPER nice dusty singletrack minus 2 portions (minus the winery section in the beginning and minus the furthest end of course that took you close to the paved road).



The venue in the distance


Things were greener than I remember


And really really fun!


So lucky for me I guess that the course was fun because I was crabby and wasn't myself at all, unless you all think I am crabby that is! : ) I had a good solid warm up and all but just wasn't feeling like myself emotionally I guess you could say. I was like a robot that came to do her job and then leave. It wasn't that I did or didn't want to be there, it was just odd. I was on autopilot in a sense, doing what I have been training myself to do for years. There but not there.

So race time came and I got a solid start.......pulling into the wind. I really didn't want to do that so much but at the same time I wanted to hurt and I wanted hammer. Not the best tactics in the world (putting your nose to the wind) but I had to do what I had to do and do what felt good.

Amanda, my teammate pulled for a bit right of the bat bless her heart but before the first climb I headed around her and stomped my way to the top of the climb in first place. Not willing to slow down or let up I pounded my way through the course. A bee was definitely in my bonnet today! I had a lot of frustrations to get out and what a better way than to hammer yourself into the ground. On one of the climbs that we had to do 3 times total (3 laps) I kept telling myself the next time I would go into my granny gear on it but when I got to it each time I just continued to plow up it in the middle ring......it felt good to be in pain today. Don't know what I was trying to get out of my system but apparently I needed this race today in every way! It is weird how things work sometimes.

Being dealt another bad set of cards in my life with Chris breaking his leg, needing surgery and having to call off our vacation of sorts, was not what anyone needed and it drained the living hell out of me all week but it worked out on race day. Who woulda thunk that tears, trials and tribulations would lead to triumph on this day?

Still leading the race and never feeling like I had the race in the bag (you never do until you cross that finish line) I kept hammering away happy with the pain I was putting on myself. God that felt good! At one point I sat up to feed and was attacked. Not ready to relinquish my lead I closed the small gap, sat on a few seconds and attacked on a hill when appropriate. It stuck.

Going into the the third lap I was still feeling just fine, simply enjoying every bit of pain I was putting myself in (ok, psycho!) and was continuing to go the clip I had been going when Amanda made her way up to me and then around me with only 10 or so minutes to go. I was psyched that it was my own teammate giving me a run for my money... I mean hey if anyone is going to it better be a teammate!! She went thundering past me and I did EVERYTHING I could to hang on because heck I had been leading for most of the entire race and now I wasn't! But when you are already on the rivet and you have been on the rivet the entire time and you have already burned every single match that you have, I had nothing left. I was still going strong but there was nothing else to give on top of that. And with that, the race was hers. I came in second after a hard fight. But I never gave up the entire race down to the finish line because you never know what can happen.

Once I crossed the finish line I burst into tears. Jim Wannamaker was there to congratulate me but was met with my flowing tears. I don't even know where it came from! He asked me what was wrong and I remember mustering up a "My LIFE!!!". Wow, I have never done that and didn't really know how I was truly feeling until that moment. I also remember telling him that I miss my parents. They aren't gone, but they are sick and they aren't the young and vivacious parents I remember. But my guess is that I stayed strong and did my job until I could finally let it all go the second I could. And boy did I ever. But I did feel bad for taking any of the attention away from the race winner and everyone else because that is the last thing I wanted to do.

I am proud of myself for what I was able to accomplish today and I was happy for what my body let me accomplish. I need to be happy with all that and I am. And hey, coming in 2nd by a smidge only makes you hungry for more and makes you work harder for that beautiful first place finish. Because if you work hard and you have the hunger, it will come.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Last Fill of Santa Barbara



Today Dr. Eric Heiden called Chris at home and had him come into his office in Park City to check out the splinting job the ER did in CA. Turned out that it wasn't a very good one so Dr. Heiden volunteered to redo Chris's cast making it a ton smaller so that he could flex his knee which he could not before. Dr. H also gave Chris a prognosis and diagnosis which will be something Chris can take into his consult on Monday with the Ankle/Foot Orthopedic Surgeon. Thank heavens for good friends yet again!!

In the meantime I was busy getting my last fill of Santa Barbara in, as this was going to be my last ride for a while here.

Taking a ride past USCB (Univ of CA- Santa Barbara)


Going past a huge crane (as in bird!). Of course you can't really see him....he is in front of the pond and is white.


Ah yes, the ocean.


Taking the bike path around Santa Barbara. They have a such a great network that connects everything to everything and if there isn't a path, you have a bike lane. It is so great!


And my final sighting of this bird that has been driving me bonkers since I have been here. I think it's a dove and it only has one tune and it sings that one tune ALL DAY. Cute at first. Old and annoying after that but it gives you a could chuckle because its so ridiculous.

Alright, pre-ride the Santa Barbara race course tomorrow (yes, I am still planning on racing!) and race on Sunday.

Will Cry 4 Coffee

Chris's new life


Yesterday Chris woke up and booked a standby pass flight home. We hadn't really discussed him staying or leaving but there were too many reasons for him to go one major being that 13 hours in a car home was not going to be pleasant. But it really hit me hard when he told me he was leaving. I totally understood but everything was really becoming reality. Our vacation together was over with, he is really messed up and I was going to be without him for a while.

I was ready to deal with the first one and was making the transition to caretaker but it was the being alone for while one that I had real problems with. I definitely got teary when he said he was going but after I dropped him at the SB airport it hit and boy did it hit hard! I walked into the Coffee Bean right afterward and the poor guy at the register greeted me with a "How are you?" and I started balling. I cried so hard unable to speak that he looked at me all sad, pushed my coffee at me and told me that it was on the house and to have a better day. OMG where did all that emotion come from?!

Well after looking back on it it came from a lot of things namely the HUGE amounts of stress that I have been enduring with my mom and dad. I felt like Chris was the only solid rock I had right now in my life and I actually told him that too at one point a few weeks ago. And now HE was even gone and not there for me (even though he cheers from a distance) and we had reversed roles with unstable ME being his rock. It was too much to take in. Way too much. And I lost my sh%& right then and there in the Coffee Bean. That poor guy will never ask another person how they are I bet!

Another thing that wasn't sitting well internally was that my buddies here have a bunch of pics around the house of us from a few years ago and when I looked at one of myself all I could think of was that I looked happy, vibrant and full of energy. I cannot tell you how awful it is to see a picture of yourself AND THINK THAT. I wasn't expecting to think that although it did confirm my suspicions that I am freakin' mess right now. All the bumps in the road are coming at once for me and my family and its almost too much to take on. I am on the edge for sure and am latching on for dear life. I will get through this because I have too but man its hard. I have to make something else "my rock" for now and that will be the bike. It is always there for me and gets me into a land and zone that I love.


As for Chris's flight home, it was great. He had a whole row to himself to prop his leg up (I was of course worried about blood clotting) and he got into SLC where a wonderful friend picked him up IN the airport (who does that!!) and then went grocery shopping for him too. Wayne Lawrence is the nicest of fellows and would do anything for another cyclist as you can see. He even came by this morning I guess and did even more grocery shopping for Chris.

On that note, thanks to all of you out there that have been a part of this (whether you wanted to be or not!!). Thanks for your time your advice and all of your passion for good health and commitment to friends. Friends like you (you know who you are!) are hard to come by and Chris and I are both so blessed to be surrounded by so many awesome and incredible people. Thanks for everything.

And on a fun note, here is Chris's response in the hospital to a 2-3 month recovery.

video

Noisy Seals

video

More noisy seals

video

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What a Week Cont'd

You can see his fracture on the right side in this picture (a white diagonal line)




And in this picture its on the left where you can really see the space



And to think that on Monday in Pacific grove things started out so pleasant sipping a latte wondering how long it may take us to get to SB.



Of course by the time we actually got to Santa Barbara on Monday I was looking like this. Got it all from the passenger seat! Irish skin + no sun all winter = bad news bears.

Wednesday, only 12 hours after Chris's accident was so full of emails, texts and phone calls to every last person that I knew or thought I knew that had any experience with ankle injuries. I was on the phone or something the WHOLE day. It was slightly stressful but I have recent experience with figuring this stuff out remember?! Luckily I also have all my own doctors on speed dial and they were more than helpful sending me in the right direction. I want Chris to have "the guy" look at his ankle. I got him several appts next week and finally whittled them down to one guy that I think will be "the guy". Actually make that 2 guys, since I want a second opinion. So he has 2 appts now. One Monday and one Tuesday.

Chris was more than happy to let me take the reins on this one since he was totally out of it today. He made a phone call or two or maybe three to the 2 Orthopedic Surgeons that are good friends of ours....Eric Heiden and Josh in PA. They were so kind and helpful and actually said that his injury was a common one and shouldn't be too crazy. I hope that is true!!!!

Eric was even willing to move everything around and get Chris into surgery this Friday but that was just too much to think about too soon and we were still in CA anyway. And unfortunately Eric is heading out for the Tour of Romendie this weekend so we had to find someone else. We shall see what the cards hold!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

What a Week

On Monday we headed down the coast with our final destination of Santa Barbara. Along with spectacular views....




...Chris, while driving no less was able to spot the spray of several whales out in the ocean. That was really neat to see!!

We also ran into things like this along the way too. So cute!

And then there was this guy. I am telling you it was like a snake with legs. I have not seen anything like it... and it liked me!!! The second I got out of the car to see the view of the ocean, this thing was out of the brush and twisting its way through my flip flops!!!!! I about had a heart attack!



More CA coast views







We also hit a beach that is full of elephant seals every year at this time

This guy was cute

Here is a whole gang of them


Yes, Monday was great but by Tuesday night we were here.



Chris was kiteboarding in the ocean and was getting some air off a wave, landed upright and felt pain. He looked down and was shocked to see his left ankle facing 90 degrees the wrong way. Within a few seconds it snapped itself back into joint. Knowing there was more wrong Chris jumped off his board and body drug himself with the wind sail to the shore where he started calling for help because he could not use his leg. There were several people around and they were all right on top of things. One dialed 911, 3 helped him across the beach, another got all his stuff in order even putting all his kite gear nicely folded back into its bag and then a few of them followed Chris in the ambulance with his car so that the car would be at the hospital! They even checked on him in the hospital and had to go back to the parked car to grab Chris's wallet for him. What a great group of people, all of whom Chris did not know.

In the meantime I had gotten the call that that this was all happening so I was making my way down to Ventura with Eric.

Turns out that Chris broke his fibula and severed/ruptured the deltoid ligament and will need surgery ASAP. His thoughts on that seen here.

Yep, day number one of a month of bliss in Santa Barbara and this happens. Everyone agrees that this SUCKS.

Let's just say... that is not a BEER

This is Chris's first big injury ever and given how active the guy is, that is pretty amazing. Here he is getting the tutorial on how to use crutches. They kind of just give them to you and walk away as if you were born to know what the heck to do with them and after he almost fell a few times I got these guys in there to freakin' help us already!!!

Gonna post the rest of what is happening in another post, this one is getting too out of control.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sea Otter Classic XC - Monterey, CA

No photos today for you except for the ones that Dave McElwaine took. Unfortunately that second picture in my glasses WAS all about I saw the whole race. And, yes, for some of you boys I am sure you may dig that but for me that was not what I wanted to see. Dave took another of yesterdays Short Track as well. If interested its here.

Early this morning I got a message from my awesome coach, Alison D that they had changed the laps to ONE (from two laps) for women. I wasn't excited or unhappy but thought that it would be best to move forward as if it was still two 19 miles laps that we were doing because heaven knows that it could be changed back! This ain't my first rodeo!

I couldn't understand why they had made that decision until I got the venue to start warming up. Man it was hot and expected to get even hotter. I went through THREE bottles of Hammer drink just warming up (normally I just get one in). Salinas which is a town just down the road from the Laguna Seca raceway got in to the 90's today!!! And that is what we raced in if you can believe it.

I actually felt good today again although a 15th place would be all I could muster up. I will take the (slow) consistency for now but will be expecting WAY more out of the future of this season. I was able to stay with the leaders longer than at the Fontana race and that is what matters because that means my training is going in the right direction. Wish I could say that about my family life but that is another story that I cannot control. Back to what I CAN control.....I felt like my transitions were spot on and my climbing was good too. I am not going to shirk any of this as I would normally like to do because it is important to focus on the GOOD.

I did drop my chain which was my dork mistake and got passed by a few gals. Think I reeled only one back in. Boooooo!! As for "race brain" that I have been getting in the last races, that was gone. It seems at 4 races now into the season that I have worked through that thank heavens. The other interesting mishap was me getting bounced onto the top tube of my bike after hitting a rut really wrong. I think I did about 20-30 feet of that part of the downhill sitting on my top tube. Yeah.....a bit sketch for sure. Not sure how I continued to roll on and correct it without stopping or crashing either. I guess that is where a strong mind comes into play because it would have been easy to NOT try and get out of that one.

But I did have race brain BEFORE the race today. Forgot my timing chip. First time in 8 years of racing here that I pulled that one. I didn't get my underwear in a bunch and it all got worked out since I have a fantastic hubby and team wrench, C Mag.

So I guess you could say that it was not cold today out on the course, that is for sure. And the words DNF bounced around in my head about 20 minutes into the race as the heat beamed into every pore of mine taking any energy left over AWAY. It was totally draining and took it toll on the body in a completely different way than what we as pro athletes put it through to begin with.

Everytime I looked down at my heart rate it was 180 bpm plus. That is usually my "attack" pace, not my everyday race pace. It was amazing how the heat affects your body. After inching my way along and begging my body to keep moving forward into the thick blanket of heat I finally had made it alone to the backside of the course in 15th place. It was there that I made the decision to take it down a notch which is a first in my career. I thought that was the best idea vs. beating myself into the ground trying to get 14th which of course is what I would have normally done in normal circumstance. But I thought to myself that if I am thinking this way for the first time ever then I better listen to that inner voice of mine and do right by it. Plus I didn't want to do more harm to my body than was already occurring. So I brought my heart rate down to about 175 which wasn't much slower but it WAS enough slower for a group of girls to catch up to me on the very last dirt climb before hitting pavement. All I could think of was "Son of #@$%&!!!!!" because when you been riding alone that long and you get caught at the last second, that sucks. But I put myself in that scenario by willingly slowing down. I KNEW that I could get caught by doing so....and I did.

But then it was time to suck it up and race a little instead of losing spots at the last second. So with an appropriately timed attack by me with a good singletrack descent following that, I was able to maintain my position across the finish line. I would have NEVER forgiven myself had I let go of my 15th place and in the end they made me work for it!!

After the 1.5 hour race I was so completely out of it as I stood there barely able to stand up. There were others racers laying on the ground at the finish line getting water and ice poured all over them and medics being used left and right. C Mag just stood by me for at least 5 solid minutes and doused me we water from head to toe. I have never thought a cold shower felt so good in my entire life!!

It took a good 30 minutes to really get my act together just so I could warm down. I couldn't think and was all over the place prior to that. I don't even remember my beloved timing chip being cut off my ankle? Wow. When that happen? I continued to have residual race brain until I got back to host housing in Pacific Grove about 2 hours later. I still couldn't think, couldn't really connect what I was trying to think and say along with feeling sick too.

I can still feel at this moment that my insides are not right...all from the heat. That is why I am still up. I just feel icky! So maybe my idea to slow down on the back side of the course was a smart one??? If I am not in the hospital, I guess it was.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Sea Otter Short Track - Monterey, CA



Today was an extremely busy day for most teams as Saturday is the busiest day at the Otter. For our team it was first a photo shoot for cyclingnews.com and then we were signing autographs right up until we had to jump on the bikes and start warming up for our first Short Track race of the season.





The MonaVie girls came over with samples and spilled them on our table. We thought that the bloody look on the table was pretty sweet and tough looking so we just left it.



So the race...even though I got my buns handed to me (came in 15th??) I was happy with how things went believe it or not. Most importantly I was happy with how I felt out there. I felt good despite the final number of 15 not showing that. This is the very first Sea Otter Short Track race that I have done in 8 years where I felt good during Short Track. Apparently I am a slow learner on this one because I finally figured out the magic formula after all these years. I honestly would have been bummed if I had felt like junk and placed what I placed because I am just so happy to have figured out what to do and not to do in order to feel good at this particular race.

So yeah, slow start + bumbled the first section in the back trying not to get caught in the mayhem of mishifts, chain suck, and dropped chains = hang on for dear life and hope for the best the rest of the race. Bottom line was that I was consistent out there and felt good and for that I am happy. And really, what is better than being able to ask John Tomac (who spectated the event) for DH advice afterwards? Always need advice no matter what your level!

As for the rest of the team, Colin killed it for 9th today. Not bad for a such a young pup. Heather worked through her injury in her first race back since it happened. Andy fought hard and landed in 14th. Amanda battled it out for a successful 19th.

And I remembered a few thoughts that were prompted by spectators of the race today too:

Prompt #1 "Way to stay consistent"
Thought: Yeah you are right, I really shouldn't be so hard on myself

Prompt #2 "Get your breathing under control!!!" (I wheezed the entire race and you could hear it from a mile away)
Thought: This is short track you ding dong! Not happening....

Prompt #3 "Kathy you rock"
Thought: That is so nice of someone to say!

Prompt #4 "Way to stand up and get it done"
Thought: Oh my god if you only knew just how much this HURT!!

As for some good news, mom is feeling better and is working with a new doctor that is changing things up so that she hopefully won't get the infection back for a 6th time. I am psyched that we finally were able to get this doctor to help mom out. She is still in the hospital but sounds a ton better than she did on Wednesday night, that is for sure. She is trying to eat more than the 200 calories per day she had been eating and is getting hydrated by IV's. This isn't the easiest time in my life or hers but somehow we are both afloat.

Ok, XC tomorrow at 1:45pm. Nighty night.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sea Otter Preride - Monterey, CA

Today we headed to Sea Otter and had our first taste of CA at Subway Sandwich stop. We walked in as the only 2 people there and 5 minutes later 16 people had piled in the door behind us to get their lunchtime sandwich. The amazing thing to us was that we thought we were in the middle of nowhere…..guess not!! The other amazing thing was that these people were all willing to wait what was going to be a good 20-25 minutes. I wold have been out of there if I were them. But I also come from a land of Heber were if 3 people are in front of you, it is considered busy.

The drive over the Sierras is amazing. It is so beautiful. And on that note, so was the weather. Blue bird the whole day.



Once we got to the Monterey area we were able to preride the course. It is the same as last year and much hasn't changed. It is dry and has a few more sandy sections than I remember. Oh, and I almost crashed big time too. You know that first fast high speed descent on open road? I was on that going well... high speed, and this guy on the "Fun Ride" that I could see in the way distance hit one of those sand pits just as I was approaching and he suddenly at the last minute swerved out of control in my line. Not sure how he managed to swerve from way left to way right in seconds but he did. Then he ATE IT and was sliding on his head in front of me...all while I was approaching. I had to SLAM my brakes on and OMG I am so lucky that my Hayes Brakes kick some major behind because I literally stopped just as I was going to ride over the guys ankle that was still attached to his bike.

I think he was shocked when he pulled his head out of the sand to see a big red blob (me) staring down at him asking him if he was ok. Man that could have been super bad because I was on track to run over his entire bike and then his face. He was ok though.

The rest of the ride was incident free thank heavens. On the far side of the course, they did take that fast fire road descent that leads to the paved climb out and somehow made some singletrack that leads to that climb instead. That was only change I could see. AND I am so proud of myself (ha!) because for the first time in 8 years of doing Sea Otter, I actually knew where I was and what was coming around each corner. Only took me that long to figure out the 38 mile course! In the past I would recognize sections but could never anticipate what was coming.

On the course on the way back into Laguna Seca we ran into all kinds of sheep. Man, that is the same road used for the Super D too. Hope the sheep find a new location by then!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Heber to Trukee, CA

For the first time in many years the drive out to Reno was a mess. It was snowing all the way from Heber across Nevada.

Starting the drive:


The Wasatch Back:


Yuck!


Well, ok, it didn’t’ snow the last 50 miles or so heading into Reno and it didn't so for a moment out of the big SLC but the rest of the way was yucky.

Toole was nice though


And we could see the ever so great Salt Lake


Crazy cell towers


Then we hit the weather. Ooh wee. Wow. Not so fun. The "sun" roof of the car not looking too sunny here.


The weather got so bad in Elko, NV that we thought chains were going to be necessary but we got through it ok without them. Snow could be seen out the window all across Nevada:


Patches of snow drift and thick dense fog that would suddenly jump out at you around a corner were flat out frightening but we made it in one piece and still made pretty darn good time actually….8.5 hours to Truckee, CA.

The car was so covered in salt that we had to get a car wash immediately upon arriving:


We stayed the night at our buddies, Fatty and Nina’s house there; they just built their beautiful home and it is something else I tell you! I caught the guys watching American Idol all by their lonesome. Hee hee.


Unfortunately my night once we got to Truckee was riddled with phone calls with nothing but bad news.

At 88 lbs. my mom is in the hospital again. She has the infection back again FOR THE 5TH TIME NOW. She is not eating, not hungry, can’t keep anything down and cannot swallow. In the 10 minutes that we spoke (she was too weak to speak longer) she told me to be prepared because her body is shutting down. Not words that you want to hear EVER. I hung up the phone and had what I believe was an anxiety attack. Never had one so I don’t know if that what it was but I was hyperventilating as if I was in a race. It was so scary but I could’ve cared less about that…..I am slowly losing both my parents (dad to dementia and mom who's body wants to quit) and it is the hardest thing I have ever had to go through.

The rest of the evening to include the better part of the night was spent crying and worrying. And I wonder why I am not performing up to my own standards on the bike right now? What a joke. Who am I kidding? I guess I have to be happy with what I CAN do out there right now because its is probably a miracle that I am even remotely competitive.