- Route: Sierra
- Ride Year: 2022
- Hometown: Tehran, Iran
- School Year: Sophomore
- Major: Neuroscience and Humanities
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Soft. Buttery. A crunchy exterior, and an interior that feels like a pillow on my tongue. When I first immigrated to Belgium, a croissant from “Bakkerij Sint-Lambertus'' was the sole motivation for me to bike along a mile-long, steep hill every day to go to class. As winds blew against my feeble frame and the burning sensation in my legs heightened with every pedal, the thought of the croissant melting on my tongue kept me going. I look back at this time of my life fondly, partly because devouring the croissant after pushing through so much pain was exhilarating, but mainly because it was my first lesson in perseverance— a lesson that served me well when my parents packed our bags and moved to the United States. My parents sacrificed everything— their beloved careers as physicians and solace of their families in Iran— to raise me in a country where freedom is a right. My parents are who I am most grateful for in this life.
I am constantly learning— I love to improve. I vividly dream of immersing myself in cultures in places far away from modernity. Everything about human experiences fascinates me— from how we evolved as a species, to how interreligious encounters have shaped our perspectives, to how grown men cry when Jack dies in the Titanic. I often daydream about being pulled on a sleigh by four Bernese Mountain dogs, but in reality, I am the proud mama of a loving poodle named Cotton, and I wouldn’t trade her for the world. My favorite book is Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist, and in my free time, I analyze movies in-depth to discover the meaningful symbols and lessons that they convey. The movie character I admire the most is Forrest Gump, although Maximus from the Gladiator is a close second.
My name is Kimia Pourebrahim, and I want to thank you for taking the time to get to know me and what I care about. I am beyond excited to embark on this journey along my incredible teammates in the fight against cancer!
Why I Ride
As healthy people, we have the privilege to choose the reasons we get out of bed each morning. But, for those facing cancer, their reason is hope– hope found in things that remind them that life is still filled with light. While scientists and doctors are on the frontlines of their battle, the soldiers behind the scenes– the people who ignite those embers of light– help give them strength. Biking to Alaska with Texas 4000 is an opportunity to be that soldier. I ride for every piece of life that cancer takes from people— whether it’s the lives of passionate teachers who must trade their love of teaching for chemotherapy appointments, the children who grow up in the hospitals isolated from their friends, or the parents who are too sick to bathe their babies in the sink and listen to their giggles. I ride for the time spent living— taking in life and doing the things we love— that is stolen by cancer and never returned. I ride because if cancer were eliminated, people can return to the embraces of their loved ones and live life on their terms– restoring so much love and light in the world.
I ride for my grandfather who battled cancer throughout his life and passed away this past November. I ride for his big smile, funny stories, and genuine presence that is missed by everyone who knew him. I ride for Peggy, my first neighbor in the United States, whose upbeat laughter is still ingrained in my memory, and who gifted me the most precious sand dollar that still hangs on my window curtain three years after she passed away from cancer. I ride for my aunt, who always welcomes me with a warm embrace and her signature soup every time I visit her in Iran. I ride for my aunt’s daughter, who couldn’t be there to hold my aunt’s hand as she battled breast cancer.
I ride for you, because you have a big heart to read my Why, and that inspires me to keep going.
To Alaska and Back,