Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Inhale. Exhale. Pray.


LuLu-ism # 55: I’m not just a bike. I’m an opportunity.

We did it! LuLu and I finally had our first spring ride! I filled her tires with air, checked her chain and tested the brakes. All good. Of course The Cowgirl and The Fake Knee were fussing and whining like babies. Let’em. Mama’s not listening.

Am I silly? Should a ride down the road on a pink bike be that exciting? What’s so special about a little wire basket, pink fenders, and white-walled tires? Why get so giddy about a four-mile bike ride? What’s the deal? Well, for me it’s much more. It’s the second year anniversary of  LuLu and me. Two years ago this month, LuLu was presented to me by the Hubs for my birthday. I asked for a bike and Gary didn’t blink once. If his wife wanted a bicycle for her 60th birthday instead of jewelry, or clothing, or whatever, then she shall have it.

That’s my Hubs. It has always given him pleasure to make me happy. Granted, he hasn’t always understood why I want the things I do, like the time I asked for a hamster as a college graduation present. No questions asked. He bought me a hamster. The man loves me. What can I say?

As I pedaled past budding trees and freshly cut grass, my thoughts were not far from the Hubs. We leave in a couple of days for Mayo for Gary’s third Ipilimumab infusion. For six weeks now, the drug that is nicknamed “ipi” for obvious reasons, has been blocking a protein on the surface of his T cells, the Ninjas of the immune system. This protein is called cytotoxic T-lymphocyte antigen 4 or CTLA-4 for short. Yeah, that’s a mouthful. By essentially disabling a brake on the immune system (CTLA-4), “ipi” allows Gary’s own immune system to turn and fight cancerous tumors.  The scary drawback of all of this is that by loosening the restraints on the immune system, dangerous side effects can occur, the kind that can kill him instead of heal him. We are holding are breath.

Riding LuLu helps me sort out all of this. It clears my head and prepares my heart for whatever comes next. As her tires rolled down the road, my prayer called the power of heaven to earth. With every rotation of the pedal, “Heal him” became my breath prayer. Inhale, exhale, pray.

Well, that was our first ride. With warmer, drier weather, the rides will become daily and the prayers stronger. And you thought I was just riding a bike didn’t you?

Later, dear friends,


Bill Minarik said...

I make some of my best connections with God on a bicycle. Linda and I are with you!

The LuLu Chronicles said...

Bill, I bet you do! You're one of my inspirations!

Annette said...

My bike and I have some fine meditations and prayers, as well; sometimes I feel the "presence" when I'm out on the trial riding along.. Wishing you all the BEST on your next trip to Mayo--I'm pedaling you both in prayer too. Come on immune cells--you pedal uphill with us.

Annette said...

Freudian slip perhaps--- I meant to say "trail" but it came out "trial"...same difference, Huh?