“What can I do here? What can I change? What am I in control of? What can I affect? What can I impact?”
This week on Sparta Chicks Radio you’ll meet mountain biker and award-winning travel journalist, Tracey Croke.
If you follow Tracey on social media, you would have seen stunning photos from her work assignments in Far North Queensland, Palestine, Jordan, Sweden, South Africa and Botswana over the past 12 months.
Of course, social media is just the highlight reel. It doesn’t show the full story.
Tracey bravely shares that story (for the first time) in this conversation.
Back in 2016, Tracey realised she was experiencing some hearing loss.
After 9 months of searching for answers, she was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
“A very good tumour in a very shit place” as she describes it. Surgery isn’t an option and instead it has been treated with radiotherapy in order to stop it from growing any further.
In this conversation, we discuss:
* how Tracey got into travel journalism
* how she discovered mountain biking,
* her advice for women who are interested in learning to ride a mountain bike (simply, don’t be put off by the crazy Youtube videos)
* what she’s learnt from travelling to places such as Jordan, Palestine and Afghanistan that are portrayed as “dangerous” in the media,
* the symptoms that led her to visit her doctor as well as her diagnosis and treatment plan,
* why she named her tumour "Timmy”,
* the unique way in which she shared the details of Timmy with her friends and family,
* whether the tumour and treatment affected her ability to ride,
* how she has used the mindfulness of mountain biking to clear her head, and
* The importance of recognising the small ‘wins’ - in recovery as well as in everyday life - so you don’t get hung up on the bad days.
It is a heavy conversation but also a fun conversation too.
As you’ll hear, humour is certainly one of the ways Tracey has managed the fear, doubt and uncertainty over the last two years.
I walked away from this conversation with a greater appreciation of the impact of choosing where we direct our attention, human kindness and the power of mountain biking and time in nature.
Notes and resources:
You can find the Brain Cancer Group here
Sparta Chicks Radio episode with Jess Douglas on the power of 1%
Sparta Chicks Radio episode with Sarah-Anne Evans from the Veloroos