Saturday, August 12, 2017

Today is the day we ride into D.C. Everyone wakes up with many emotions excitement, sadness, and the feeling that they don’t want this to end. You can tell that these last two months have changed all 38 men who started as strangers and are ending this journey as brothers. For me this ride in particular is one that I will never forget. I’ll never forget this ride because I wasn’t supposed to ride in. About 4 weeks ago in Iowa I suffered a sever tear in my lateral meniscus that had me on a flight home the next day with a shattered heart. I promised my team holding back tears that there is nothing that’s gonna keep me from meeting up with them in DC as we had our motto for the summer 38 out 38 in. So I went home got surgery and started my recovery. I met back up with them the night before ride in in Bethesda Maryland and they surprised me with an adaptive bike that you pedal with your arms so I can lead them into D.C.  I was so happy and in shock that I was shaking when they revealed it to me. Before the ride in I started to get nervous not knowing whether I would be able to keep up with them or not but we started to get going and the cheers and words of encouragement pushed me even when my arms started to burn. It felt good to push myself again and be on the bike with all the guys again. So many emotions were swirling through me. The two miles felt like slow motion and when we arrived with the crowd and I crutched up the capitol lawn I couldn’t help but start tearing up and then I saw my mom and family then started bawling crying. I got to my team and the hugs and tears were flowing. Then I realized what we had accomplished this summer and I knew I had 37 more brothers for the rest of my life. It is a day that I will never forget. I learned that you truly can accomplish anything you put your mind and heart too no matter what adversities come your way. Much love to all my teammates the other Pi alphas and Everyone who supported us along the journey.

-Clayton Muehlstein