Making it up the Hill: Caitlin’s MS Bike Journey


“The confirmation of my MS diagnosis was both a relief and terrifying. It was great to finally know what was happening to me, but it was overshadowed by fear and worry. I sat in my car and cried after that appointment. My knowledge of MS was limited. I was told there was no cure. I would have to live with it for the rest of my life. So, what did that mean? Was I going to be able to run and play sports again? Was it going to get worse? What did this mean for my future? 

I’ve been participating in MS Bike since 2016. I have difficulty running because I experience numbness and tingling when I exercise, but I have found that cycling is a great form of activity for me. To me, MS Bike is a beautiful example for life with MS. It’s hard, it’s exhausting, it’s mentally taxing, and there are moments when you don’t think you can make it up that next hill, but then you realize you’re supported. There is a whole community of people cheering you on. We’re all fighting to end MS by raising awareness and helping fund support and research for all who live with the disease. I cycle because it is an activity that I’m able to do. It’s a way for me to take control of my MS and actively support others living with the disease. 

My dad started participating in the MS Bike Leduc to Camrose the year after my diagnosis. I joined the challenge the following year with friends and my brother joined me in 2019. My sister-in-law and nephews are there to cheer us on at the finish line. My MS not only affects me, but it also has an impact on my family. My family and friends have been a significant source of support in my MS journey. 

The emotions from the event can be overwhelming—hope, pride, and support. MS Bike has brought a sense of community to my life. I have met so many inspiring people through MS Bike—from those who have MS to those who ride in support of a loved one living with MS, to the many volunteers, sponsors, and MS Canada staff. I have been able to share my MS journey with people through my fundraising efforts and have become a personal connection for others. I have also been fortunate to meet others who live with MS and listen to their journeys and experiences. 

Raising funds for MS Bike can mean new therapies, new programs, and the ability to continue services needed by the MS community. The ongoing research and breakthroughs are positively impacting the lives of those living with MS and those who care for someone with MS. Fundraising spreads awareness of this disease and the significant impact it has on Canadians. Through awareness, we can combat the stigma attached to living with MS. 

With your support, people like me have access to the programs and services we need. Your impact makes me hopeful that one day we will find a cure.” 

 — Caitlin, diagnosed in 2014 

Sign up for the challenge. Stay for the community. Register for MS Bike here.