This race is personal

June 02,2014

Riding our bikes is something we love to do, and doing it with the Pulmonary Hypertension Association, working with members of the PH community over the past 2 years to raise awareness has made it all the more enjoyable, and all the more meaningful.

One of the best parts about being a member of Team PH has been getting to know members of the PH community. From meeting people at Conference and support group meetings, to connecting at events and on social media, we have been inspired by people much braver than ourselves. We now know many heroes. And we have learned from – and smiled and laughed with – our PHriends.

But you know what, just as we approach RAAM, a lot has hit home these past few weeks.

You see, we have also met some incredible people along the way have now left us. Personally over the past two years I have lost patients and friends to this disease, and members of our team have felt the sadness in losing someone who had PH. These people were rays of sunshine to us and those around them, and although they fought PH for years, they may have had PH, “but PH didn’t have [them].” They exemplified resilience, and reminded us of the important things in life. It is sad to think of a world without them in it, and we share in mourning their loss while celebrating their spirit.

So in less than 12 days we will be racing from Oceanside towards Annapolis. Honestly, it seems strange to be preparing for the race of our lives when hearts at times are heavy. Yet it makes it all the more urgent that we work to find a cure. If what we do helps fund research to find a cure, then maybe – just maybe – riding our bikes is no longer just about riding our bikes. But then again, on Team PH it never was.

We ride not only with those who live with PH, but also in honor of those who have gone before us. May they breathe easy and be at peace.

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