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Keep it Real Wednesday

December 7, 2022


Yesterday I had a memory pop up on Facebook from 2017 when Rosemary was 91 years old.  Wade and I brought her to the Idaho Botanical Gardens, Winter Garden Aglow, in a wheelchair to experience the Christmas lights on a snowy winter evening.  We bundled her up in blankets and she enjoyed the lights tremendously.  Little did she know what was in store for her starting in 2018.

Neither did we! 

The Blessing Bike was life-changing for Rosemary.

I think many people see the Blessing Bike as a resource to ride in the summer when the weather is nice, and bikes are everywhere. I agree. Summer is a great time to ride but so is spring, fall, and yes, WINTER.

Recently, I have heard rumors that most people have put their Blessing Bikes away until Spring, which if I am being honest, makes me a little sad.

My question is, WHY?

Some of the benefits of the Blessing Bike include staying active, being outdoors, making connections with others, bonding with family and friends, promoting meaningful and enjoyable memories, and just receiving the benefit of being outdoors and being PRESENT with another person. These are YEAR-ROUND needs of those we care for, NOT seasonal. These are pillars of good mental health.

But what about the COLD?

Riding in the COLD?  Well, just ask the 16 groups of Blessing Bikes who rode through the streets of downtown Boise together last Saturday in the Parade when it was 18 degrees.  I don’t think they have regrets about the lasting memories they created.

Accessories such as heated blankets, warm gloves, hand warmers, and lava buns (great find on amazon) are all great tools to keep our loved ones warm and cozy for a ride.

Perhaps you might want to think about putting lights on your bike and take a spin in the crisp night air to see the Christmas lights. That was one of Rosemary’s favorite things too.

Also, when you see a day when big puffy snowflakes are falling, consider taking a ride on the bike so your passenger can FEEL the SNOW on their face when they ride.  We all know how magical that can be.

As I compare the pictures of Rosemary in 2017 to the pictures of 2018 to 2022, there are significant differences in what I see.

I believe in 2016, she was living to die. She was just biding her time. Unfortunately, she saw the wheelchair as yet another limitation for her.

Then in 2018 when Rosemary received her Blessing Bike, a switch was flipped in her brain.  I believe she saw the bike as FREEDOM and ADVENTURE.

That was when she stopped living to die and started LIVING to LIVE. 

So, before you put that blessing bike too far back in the garage where you can’t reach it until spring, I would encourage you to grab a set of battery-operated lights, and a few extra blankets and take a spin to see Christmas lights in your community.

I promise you; you won’t be disappointed.

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