A day things changed…

That was today.

This evening I planned to write a post about my Dad, as it’s fathers day and all, that would have been easy, my Dad has taught me a lot and I use those lessons in my job every day, from how to sell, how to act, how to manage I could write quite a few actually…

Then today I was thinking about what I want my blog to be, I have been writing a lot recently having planned to write one post a day from the start of this month, but almost everything has come back to work, business, marketing and social media. These are all things that I am passionate about but not things that define me, today I considered renaming my blog, I considered writing more about computer games and reviews of them, maybe more about my challenges with my health (few know I am a type 1 diabetic with 1 kidney) but ultimately these were all just vague thoughts that come back to a greater issue in my life at the moment:

Recently I have been way too focussed on work

Not a really bad thing, I am young and I like my job, but I have no external focus or goal, what I mean is I have focussed on work to the detriment of other areas of my life, my physical health mostly – I have been eating badly, sleeping badly and lacking in exercise, which for a diabetic is not a good thing at all. I want to stress This is not my employers fault it is mine, I was doing a similar job last year and I ran 2 marathons…

But today that all changed: Dad called

As so often in life it takes a shock to the system, to really drive a personal change, it did for me today, this evening Dad called me and told me my oldest cousin has seen a return of the cancer that has affected her in earlier years, not good. I didn’t really react at first, I don’t know how in those kinds of situations, I think I just said “shit, OK” and that was it.

I carried on with my evening and it was only much later that everything fell together, my cousins misfortune placed my minor concerns about my life firmly in perspective and drove me to take action, I need a challenge, I always do, and I need to feel like I am doing something, so I have rolled all this together and come up with a crazy plan and to get there I had to go…

…Back to the moleskin:

In late 2008 my then girlfriend broke up with me, I reacted in typical fashion by taking some time out and climbing Kilimanjaro.  While up there I wrote down a series of plans and thoughts and kept a diary, I have  never written any of it up or even revisited it seriously since, until now.

One of the ideas was to cycle across Europe from North to South, from Hammerfest in Norway (the most Northern town in continental Europe to Tarifa in Spain, at the other end, a total of about 3350 miles!

So next year I am going to do that!

I’m putting it in writing now, Next year I will cycle from North to South across Europe to raise money for a cancer charity of my cousin’s choice. And as a warm up this year I just went online and signed up to the London – Paris cycle in September:

Again I will be raising money for a cancer charity, more details to come.

I have decided, I am not going to sit here and mope about getting out of shape or spend any more time with too much of a focus on work, I am not going to take my current health for granted, I am going to use it while I have it to do some crazy stuff and raise some money for a good cause. Something good might even come of it, and this blog will be telling you the story, I haven’t cycled for about 2 years, so this will be fun!

My challenge is nothing compared to that my cousin has to face, getting over something like cancer and it is almost shameful that it took something like that to spur me into action…

You see: today was a day that things changed.

And I do have to mention my Dad here, he is the one who has, from a young age, instilled me with the positive attitude that gives me the confidence, mental strength and desire to take on these challenges, he is also the one who keeps me involved in all the family stuff and who has taught me that deep down I do need to put family first, even though I sometimes don’t do my fare share and am admittedly not the best cousin, brother, son or anything, often too distant or focussed on myself.

Thanks Dad, you’re the best.

And good luck Sarah, you will get through this, I know you will. 


3 responses to “A day things changed…

  1. wow Tom…sat here with tears in my eyes now…we love you. I, G A & J

  2. Wow I am impressed, moved and prouud.
    It is one hell of a challenge and will be a massive achievement for a great cause
    I have to admit to also being jealous- you know my passion here for cycling adventures – and so also feeling very old as this is out of my league
    Have a fab time and enjoy the ride graham

  3. Admire your spirit-good cause-good luck
    Barry & Margaret..

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