Cycling to Break the Cycle
I’m Natalie Cayer. If someone told me 4 years ago that I would be riding a bicycle for 95 miles along the Pacific coast, I would have laughed. Not because I wasn’t strong enough physically to do that, but because embarking on this kind of adventure would entail leaving the house for many hours, and that’s something I could not do.
4 years ago I was trapped in an abusive marriage where my ex-husband was monitoring every step I took.
I could not ride a bicycle. I could not spend time with friends. I could not even go for a walk. If I attempted to do anything on my own, my abusive ex would immediately throw a fit and suspect me of either trying to leave him or cheating on him, so it wasn’t even worth a try. My life could have still been like this if I hadn’t found out about Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence.
When you are in a domestic violence situation, you do need someone else to tell you things are not right and that you can and need to get yourself out of that. Next Door played that role for me – through support groups, counseling and legal help with restraining orders and divorce, the amazing staff members and volunteers of this organization helped me see how strong I was and that there was no reason for me to stay with my ex.
My life has been free from violence for the past 4 years, and I will be forever grateful to Next Door for helping me take the first – and the hardest – step towards my freedom. As part of me giving back, I have pledged to raise $3,000 for this organization, so they can help other women like me break the cycle of abuse. I will ride a very challenging 95-mile route through Half Moon Bay, as part of the Echelon Palo Alto Gran Fodo. The ride includes a category 2 climb on Tunitas Creek, and overall will be the most difficult ride I have done in my life to date.
Please support my fundraising efforts by donating any amount here.