A Good Man – Chapter 33 – JohnA Passaro
Any time fear and worry
Come knocking on my door
Trying to barge in
They are going to have to hang out with
Faith, hope and trust.
And they are not going to
Let them hang out long.
TNT Basketball Analyst
Two of my all-time favorite books are:
“Every Second Counts” and “It’s Not About the Bike”, both written by Lance Armstrong.
I have read each of them many times.
Any time I refer to either, I undoubtedly learn something new about the human spirit.
Both books are about Lance Armstrong’s fight and struggle to beat cancer, and then going on to win five Tour De Force cycling events, the athletic event thought to be one of the most physically and mentally grueling in the world.
I am very fortunate that I have never had the experience of fighting to overcome cancer, but I found both books to be extremely inspirational.
So did the cancer community.
Both Lance Armstrong and his two books provided belief, hope, and inspiration to so many people – people who are in the fight of their lives.
I am certain the books had a great impact on improving the quality of life of many others.
Then it was revealed that Lance Armstrong had lied about taking performance-enhancing drugs during each of his Tour de Force victories.
Everyone immediately put Lance Armstrong into the ‘loveless prison’.
I, myself, did the same.
Everything he ever said or stood for became a lie.
Belief, hope, and inspiration … pulled from the people who needed it the most, at the time they needed it the most.
As I write this, neither of his books is for sale on any venue.
That is so unfortunate.
But I understand.
How can one be inspired by a lie?
For a very long time, I felt the same way and didn’t refer to his books.
I threw out all of his redeeming qualities because he did something wrong, something terribly wrong.
In essence, I let the lie win.
I just should have listened to Lance Armstrong’s own hint he gave to everyone when he titled his book: “It’s not about the bike.”
It is about the belief.
It is about the hope.
It is about the inspiration.
Winning the Tour De Force five times pales in comparison to offering belief, hope, and inspiration to millions of people who are in the fight of their lives against cancer.
Eventually, Lance Armstrong was stripped of all his Tour De Force victories.
But sadder still, millions of people were stripped of their belief, hope, and inspiration during the biggest fight of their lives.
Instead of isolating Lance Armstrong’s lie and not believing in any of his cycling success, the world threw out all of Lance Armstrong, including all of his redeeming qualities of belief, hope and inspiration in his personal fight to overcome cancer.
It took me a while, but I recently was able to separate in my mind, Lance Armstrong the cancer survivor, from Lance Armstrong the cyclist.
I started to refer to his books again, and I’m so glad I did.
There are so many great parts to each of his books.
Parts which are unavailable elsewhere – his approach, his attitude, his change as a man after adversity struck, and his new perspective on life, all of which make a great inspiring read.
I am glad I started referring to them again.
During our lifetime, we will all run into our own personal Lance Armstrong.
I would advise you to believe in them anyway.
Because “Every Second Count,” and “It’s Not About the Bike”.
It’s about the belief, hope and inspiration one can impart to others – attributes that can improve the
quality of other people’s lives during the time they need it the most.
Read the next chapter – A D.I.M.E. is Worthless
I am so glad you wrote this! I too have felt the same but wasn’t capable of separating those two in order to retain the good parts of what he was able to achieve and as a result, inspire others to do the same. I was introduced to his book “Its not about the Bike” during my fathers battle with cancer which he eventually succumbed to. Like many others I become entwined in Lance’s professional career and blindly supported him. For a while, it was a story for the ages. For now, and in part thanks to you, I can re-engage as I separate the two sides of this issue. If for no other reason than to help re-inspire others in their battle. Thank you again.
It’s funny – I was actually listening to “It’s Not About The Bike” again today. Too much good in his books to throw it away because of a lie.