Pre-Order So God Made a Mother

I am currently nursing multiple scrapes and bruises from a nasty spill I took while cycling last week.

The fall was totally my fault. My husband and I were enjoying a rare mid-week getaway in Wimberley, a quaint and quiet small town along the Blanco River in the Texas Hill Country.

The Blanco River in Wimberley, TX
The Blanco River in Wimberley, TX

We brought our road bikes with us to take in a little scenery and get in a little exercise during our mini-vacay–a small attempt to counteract the wine and decadent food we were sure to consume. Wednesday morning offered us glorious riding weather—sunny, but not-yet-hot, almost zero humidity, and just a slight breeze. Clad in our fancy cycling gear, we took a right turn from the rustic cabin we were staying in and started off on our first bike ride together since completing almost a year’s worth of treatment for Stage III colorectal cancer. While I love the heart-pumping intensity of a good spin class, nothing really compares to the exhilaration of riding outdoors on the open road. Even with my feet locked into my clips, I feel a sense of freedom when riding; I can pedal fast, I can coast, I can stop and rest, take a picture, have a snack, and enjoy nature more up close and personal than from the window of my car and less dangerously than when running. This day was no different. Within our first mile, we had spotted two deer, a hawk, and a cardinal.


We stopped and took a selfie (us-ie?) in front of a “Watch For Ice” sign appropriate for Hill Country winters but laughably out of place on this picture-perfect spring day. The hills were challenging yet manageable, and I might have even squealed “Wheeeeeeeee!” on a downhill. Two-and-a-half miles into the ride we came upon a one-lane bridge traversing the Blanco River. Due to recent rains in the area, the road was covered with about several inches of water creating an idyllic scene. Nothing is as quite as refreshing as the chill of crystal clear Texas river water on a sunny day. Armed with that knowledge and an ever-present sense of adventure, I got set to ride across the bridge through the water.

One lane bridge across the Blanco River
One lane bridge across the Blanco River

I could already feel the droplets of water spinning from my tires and misting my arms and legs. I could already see my tires slicing through the calm, clear water, as satisfying as being the first to stick a knife in a fresh jar of smooth peanut butter. Not once did I think about the physics of riding across what must be a slick, water-covered concrete surface on a lightweight road bicycle with skinny tires specifically designed to decrease road friction and increase speed and efficiency. My husband also does not think about this because like me, he is so taken by the scenery, that he is only busy setting his phone to video mode. I could tell you the rest, but this video sums it up best (warning: my husband says the bad word for poop). 

As my husband wrestled me from my bike and my cycling shoes, I cursed myself for my stupidity and my hasty decision to ride across that bridge and simultaneously wish we had brought our mountain bikes so we could make it across to the other side. My sweet husband offered to attempt to ride across the bridge on his road bike in solidarity, but I told him that wasn’t necessary, that one fall was enough for the day.

Just one of many from my big splash!
Just one of many from my big splash!
Still smiling!
Still smiling!

I was in great pain, but I managed to blink back my tears to smile for a few pictures and enjoy letting the river water run over my feet and ankles. I declined my husband’s next offer to ride back to the cabin and get the car so that I don’t have to ride back after taking that tumble. Getting back up and getting back on my bicycle after a fall is more than a matter of pride; it is in my DNA. This wasn’t my first bad wipeout, and I guarantee it won’t be my last. Some people are afraid of falling down in life. I am only afraid of not having the courage to get back up and keep on rolling.

As much as I should be embarrassed by my fall, it is an opportunity to show my son and my daughter that falling and failing are nothing to fear; that scrapes and bruises are bearable; that sh!t happens, and that we should all be able to laugh at ourselves and in the words of the ubiquitous Taylor Swift, “shake it off”.

You can follow my cancer journey at


So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Rebecca Wells

Rebecca Wells is still trying to figure out what she wants to be when she grows up. In addition to being a mom and a wife, she has been a teacher, instructional coach, and most recently, the dean of instruction at an inner city high school in Houston, Texas. Due to factors surrounding her treatment for stage 3 colorectal cancer, she has traded a career in education to pursue other passions and interests. When she gets all done with chemo, she will return to running, cycling, swimming, yoga and soccer. Rebecca lives in Cypress, a small suburban community just outside of Houston, where there are fields of donkeys and llamas right down the street from the grocery store, and small trailer parks nestled in between subdivisions featuring homes valued at half a million dollars (she doesn’t live in either one!). She shares her home with her husband, daughter, son, and two crazy, crazy dogs.

I Never Wanted to Be a Hospital Mom

In: Cancer, Motherhood
Toddler standing with IV pole, black-and-white photo

Life as a hospital mom is not a life for just anyone. You have no other choice, there is no get-out-free card you can just put down and say, “Nope, Lord, I do not want this, take it back.” My heart hurts 99 percent of the time. My heart hurts for my child and the pain he is suffering. A necessary evil to keep him on the side of Heaven’s gates.  My heart hurts from the unknown of each day. Will he eat? Will he thrive today? What utter chaos will be thrown our way today? Will there be vomit...

Keep Reading

Cancer Is Weird

In: Cancer, Living
Woman smiling, color photo

Cancer is weird. For 3.5 years I looked into the mirror and didn’t recognize the person looking at me.  First, it was scared eyes. My eyes had lost the look in them that made me feel invincible. I had learned I wasn’t.  A week or so later, I saw the cut on my chest for my port. Then it was a bald head. Then a bald, steroid filled, and puffed up faced person looking at me. RELATED: This is What Cancer Looks Like Sometimes it was a teary-eyed, defeated person. Someone who had been up all night in pain.  I...

Keep Reading

Please Don’t Let My Baby Die

In: Cancer, Motherhood
Toddler boy lying in hospital bed, color photo

I wasn’t made for this.  I am not strong enough. Lord, where are you taking me? Why does this joyful time, filled with our last baby’s firsts, have to be this way? Why did the doctors look at me that way? They know what’s coming, and deep down inside, so do I. The inevitable word that is about to come out of their mouths.  The C-word.  Cancer. It’s life-changing.  Almost as if it were a car accident. Believe me, I know about that. To be the reason behind a grown man hanging onto a thread. Completely unintentional. I just needed...

Keep Reading

The Art of Showing Up

In: Cancer, Kids
Dad hugging young son

As a father of four boys, you may imagine that life is hectic from time to time for me.  While it truly is, in fact, quite crazy sometimes, it isn’t always because of the reasons you might think.  I have four boys, ages 11, 4, 3, and almost 2, and that certainly makes for an interesting daily living experience for my wife and me.  We do our best to remain patient and lean on God’s strength and peace to fill us on the days that seem overly daunting and occasionally even downright impossible, but we are human.  Therefore, we fail...

Keep Reading

No One Prepares You for When Your Husband Has Cancer

In: Baby, Cancer, Marriage
Family sitting by window

No one ever prepares you for the moment you hear your spouse has cancer.   More so, no one prepares for you to hear this when you have a 5-month-old at home. “Mom, they said the tumor is cancerous, and they need to enucleate his eye on Thursday,” I say quietly into the phone as I pump in a dirty bathroom stall at the eye hospital.   Whir. Whir. Whir. Whir. Gosh, I hate pumping.  Today is my first day being away from my daughter. My mom is watching her while I made the trip to the eye hospital with...

Keep Reading

l Will Never Stop Missing My Sister

In: Cancer, Grief, Loss
Woman in red shirt

It might be 16 years too late to properly depict the depressive senses that engulfed my whole being when I lost my only sister Aurora to colon cancer in 2006. Painful flashbacks continue to fill my everyday life at the most inopportune moments that  writing about it might somehow alleviate my grief. I remember getting that random phone call from her one sunny day in September 2006 and how guilt automatically hit me. It had been a while since I last saw her. “It’s positive,” she said. Backed with years of joking around and playing tricks on her since childhood,...

Keep Reading

Having Cancer at 34 Taught Me How to Live

In: Cancer
Husband and wife on boat, color photo

This picture came up in my Facebook memories today. It took my breath away for a moment, just like it has for nine years now. It was the last picture taken of me before my midwife found the lump and my life changed forever.  The first time I saw that photo, I realized I didn’t know that woman anymore. She was naive. Laying there in the sun without any inkling that a cancer was growing inside her. Look at her—unafraid and without anxiety. Less than 48 hours later, she would be gone, replaced by someone who was afraid of each...

Keep Reading

How Grateful I Am for a Mother Who Believed in Me

In: Cancer, Grief
Mother and grown daughter, color photo

It was a hot summer day sometime in the middle of high school. I was young and naive, but the ugly six-letter word was looming over our family: cancer. Although I didn’t know it then, this would be our last normal summer before my mother’s health would worsen. Cancer would give way to terminal cancer. It’s funny how something so big can seem so small in those moments. My mom and I were sitting on our back porch, encased in a narrow hedge of yew bushes. It was a yellow, lazy Saturday, and my brothers and father were at Cub...

Keep Reading

A Medical Diagnosis Challenges a Marriage

In: Cancer, Living, Marriage
Bald woman holding clippers over husband's head, color photo

It is no secret now that Albert Pujols and his wife have announced their divorce shortly after she had surgery to remove a brain tumor. As a breast cancer survivor, this news hit me in a special way. As I was reading through an article from Today, there was a quote that hit me hard, “But a marriage falling apart is far more common when the wife is the patient, researchers have found. A woman is six times more likely to be separated or divorced soon after a diagnosis of cancer or multiple sclerosis than if a man in the relationship is...

Keep Reading

When You’re Barely Hanging On, It’s OK to Ask For Help

In: Cancer, Living, Motherhood
Worn mailbox, color photo

I’m a bundle full of fun. My list of fun things include being diagnosed with cancer at age 33, having the BRAC1 gene mutation, doing six months of oral chemo, having a hysterectomy at 34, my ovaries and tubes out at 34, enduring a double mastectomy, and a million scans and procedures under my belt, followed by five months of oral chemo. I was a stay-at-home mom during this time with a 7, 5, and 2-year-old.  Sometimes I feel like I experienced a whole lifetime in one short snapshot of a year.   At the beginning of my diagnosis, our mailbox...

Keep Reading