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Why.

T-Minus 90 Days until we set on this adventure we've taken on. Time on the bike has amped up. I've been conquering mountain passes and roads I never thought were doable for a "non-climber" like me. I've been picking the brains of some inspirational people who have given me some invaluable advice. I'm coming up with an event "Bible". Figuring out how to raise $10,000. Making lists. Planning.

Getting equally as nervous as I am excited.

I've started to tell people about what we're doing in an attempt to spread the word because this is so important. Often, I get reactions of indifference. And sometimes I get asked, "Why? What does Noah, a kid who is so different than us 'normal' folk, get out of this?" That's been a really hard question to answer up until now.

People don't get it. They don't get WHY. 

This experience with Noah is teaching me that differences aren't road blocks. They're small speed bumps that we just need to overcome. Even the planning of this event forces me to look at things differently because it isn't JUST a 4 day bike ride. Sure, Noah is different than I am, but he will still experience the challenges and the joys of accomplishing 158 miles on the bike with me. We just have to adapt some things to make it work!

Noah may not be able to verbalize his needs or wants or tell me I'm doing a good job, but that doesn't mean he isn't experiencing all of this. It also doesn't mean he can't communicate those things to me in his own Noah way. I've learned a bit about his communication style in the times we've spent together over the last 3 years. I know when he's happy and content and when he isn't. It's just a different way of knowing him. His differences have taught me to be more aware. To be more present. And I will spend 4 days with him attached to me doing just that...being present in each moment.

This is going to be tough on him, too. He's taking on hours in the trailer behind my derriere at altitude during the Summer. Luckily for me, that kid is more accomplished athlete than I and with an awesome support crew taking care of both of us and ensuring our safety, I'm confident that when we hit mile 158 we'll both be better for it.

I'd be lying if I didn't get something....a lot of things...out of this. I'm challenging my body and my mind to push past what will feel comfortable and at times, even possible. I'm giving myself something to be proud of. I'm getting time with Noah, who is nothing short of incredible. Not to mention I'm currently in the best shape of my life!

We aren't just doing this for Noah and I, but to show people that there are infinite possibilities for those we consider "incapable" and "different" if you simply put your mind and a long set of legs to it. (long legs not necessarily required!). We are raising the awareness that it can be done and the funds to make it possible for other kids like Noah...

I can't wait to get to the end of this journey. To jump off my bike and kiss those sweet cheeks of Noah's knowing we've accomplished something BIG for both of us in the name of inclusion. For everyone.


Learn more about our trip and how you can support us (because we need it!) here: https://kyle-pease-foundation-inc.networkforgood.com/projects/50559-helen-gardner-s-fundraiser

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