We parents have dreams for our children. We start building those dreams from the day they are born. They typically include doing well in school, going on to college, graduating, and starting a career. Somewhere along the way they will meet the right person and get married. Then one day, we realize that the dreams we have for our children are essentially the lives we have lived. There comes a day when our dreams and our children's dreams no longer travel the same road. Although we have worked to get them out of the nest, suddenly they have climbed out on the branch by themselves and are ready to spread their wings and take the leap on their own.
That is how it has been with Chad. He was doing pretty good living my dream and was within months of graduating from college with his Mechanical Engineering degree. A job was pretty much lined up, but he had other dreams to chase. One afternoon last October he called to tell me that there were a couple of bike teams that had shown an interest in him. They had been discussing things, and he had consulted with one of his teammates, and both teams looked like good opportunities. During the call, I sensed there was something he wanted to ask, but he never did.
As I laid in bed that night, I thought of what Chad had not asked. He wanted to know how I felt about him pursuing cycling after graduation. Honestly, I had mixed emotions about it all. I hated to see him walk away from a good job, but I also wanted to see him pursue something he has a passion for. When I woke up the next morning, I had the answer. I did not want Chad to ever have to wonder, "What if?"
Later that day I called him and told him that now was the time for him to go for it. I did not want him to grow up and find himself in the situation I found myself in: That being fifty years old with cancer and wondering, "Would I ever get to do the things I had put off for so long?" Cancer has taught me to chase the dreams while they are fresh.
Chad now lives in Ft. Collins, Colorado, and is living his dream. He is criss-crossing the country racing his bike while chasing his other dream of becoming a pro cyclist. I have no doubt that he will make it.
If you want to know more about the life of a cyclist, Chad has a blog at: