I don't post much, or try hard not too, since it seems like there is an overwhelming amount of info here in the forum. I usually write one big post for the year, usually around my cycling aniversary (yes I do celebrate, Nov. 14th), and then interject little thoughts into other's posts or lurk. Well right now I have a lot on my mind, and figured it would be ok to start celebrating my anniversary a little early. So here goes:
Life is really complicated, especially now. I haven't done much cycling this year, not that this is the way I planned it, it just seems the Fates had other plans for me. 2003 was the year of the bike for me, I spent every free moment either on my bike or in the LBS. I was a bit obsessed to say the least. I logged every mile, calculated future mileage, and pushed myself so very hard to increase my average mph. I was in great shape, happy, and didn't have a care in the world. Then life happened, and happened in a big way. My Mom lost her job, I was working 2 jobs and going to grad school. I stressed about losing the home I grew up in and life just stopped being fun. I didn't have much time to ride my bike and as much as I liked commuting, the bike I road just sucked.
As if things couldn't get worse (never, never, never make that assumption because once you hit rock bottom, digging always becomes an option) I found out I am being laid off from my job at the end of the month. For the first time in a while I just stopped, and realized that life didn't have to be so dreary. Strangely enough, what should have been terrible news, was an unexpected blessing in disguise. I had a chance to start over and do things right.
So like Stella, I made some major changes in my life. I bought my dream bike, a 2005 Kona Jake the Snake. I had been pining over and viewing this bike online every week for a year. I called my bike shop had them place the order. Now I have the coolest blue bike I have ever seen. I leave work excited to get home and go for a ride.
While out on the inaugural spin, I rediscovered the simple joy of pedaling. With no bike computer, it was just me and the road and trail, having a blast. No average speed looming in my face, I didn't feel the need to compete with the world, I was free to just enjoy the moment. Cycling went from being this major production, to a wonderful simple pleasure. What is more wonderful than stepping outside of your house with your bike, clipping into your pedals and pushing off with the whole world out there ready to be discovered? It is like every ride is a new adventure.
We don't always get a chance for a do over, and now that I have one I don't intend to waste it. Life in and of itself is complicated, I made it worse by trying to control every little detail. Instead of something to be experienced, it became something to be planned. I just can't live like that anymore. So I am stepping out on faith, knowing that things always manage to work out the way they are supposed to regardless what I do, comforted by the fact that both of my two wheeled machines are there when I need or want a new perspective. So I close out another year with cycling having learned another valuable lesson and ready to embrace the future whatever it may be. Happy anniversary to me!