Monday, June 17, 2013

Life is Crazy sometimes...

Pittsburgh, PA
The past couple of weeks have been filled with lots and lots of action. Sometimes action can be good and sometimes action can be bad. After my last post I skied for one more day in Bend, OR under the bright sun and cloudless skies.Meanwhile My mom was at the hospital in Pittsburgh, PA undergoing surgery for a very rare type of appendix cancer she has had for the past 10 years. It was her initial surgery and chemo that brought me to Minneapolis over 9 years ago and I  am grateful that everything worked out and that I was able to continue my athletic career, start my married life, work closely with the community and spend time with my mom as she only lived about 15 minutes away in St.Paul!

Her surgery was long but the doctors felt they had extended her life another 10 years or so, which I am very happy about! It was during her recovery in the ICU that she suddenly suffered a stroke and my attention was immeadiately diverted from ski brands, racing teams and snow conditions, to my mom in and family in Pittsburgh. Within 6 hours Brian helped me book a flight for first thing the next morning and I was off to Pittsburgh to be with them.

The Steel City with lots of Culture and Places to explore
Travel went smooth and I was able to see my mom that evening. She was sleeping, upwards of 23 and 3/4 hours a day, but opened her eyes a bit to see me. I went to the hotel too exhausted for dinner and fell asleep instantly. I awoke the next morning at 5 AM (2 AM Oregon time) and got on the treadmill for an hour and a half workout before heading over to the hospital for a full day with my mom. The doctors filled me in with details and I sat with her and my grandmother for a long time.

My mom and grandmother in the ICU...this was a good moment!
The next week was filled with ups and downs in her health. I was able to connect with the local Cross Country Ski Community in the Pittsburgh area and the time I spent training was a good release from the stress of the situation. I am forever thankful to the wonderful people who made my trip so comforting.

Pittsburgh XC Skiers are great! A huge thanks to Richard for helping me with intervals on the hilly Pittsburgh terrain!
My new friend and musician Erin.
Some of Erin's friends we found Nordic Walking in the park.
Naomi and James were a huge support network for me teaching me where to ski and watching  me do intervals!!!
My mother's status continues to improve and I saw an opportunity to return home to Minneapolis to take care of some needed items, mowed the lawn, ran in a sponsor event, train with the local ski clubs and get back to the youth here in North Minneapolis! I miss the kids a ton and while walking Lahti yesterday a kid in the neighborhood said they recognized me from Run Club! Awesome!

Training has been going well and I am getting even more excited about the upcoming Olympic Season! Brian and I have had a busy spring of Team Selection and Sponsor talks. We are excited to release the names and organizations that we will represent in this important year! We have had the opportunity to work with some incredible people and companies over the past couple of months while making this decision and the final call will not be easy. It feels amazing to have so many people behind Team Gregg now and we can certainly feel the excitement and encouragement!

Staying motivated and getting after it! Training is going well and I am very excited for the season!
Brian and I look forward to sharing some more great adventures through our training and mentoring and of course keep people updated on the status of my mom.

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