Humility and My New B-Day Sympathy Bike

Last evening, I went to the bike store to pick out yet another b-day present. This birthday of mine is proving very lucrative – I think I’m getting really great gifts this year due to extra sympathy points. Whatever, I’ll take it. (See A Proposed LMN Music Montage for details on current craziness)

So the very nice guy at the bike store found me the perfect bike – a match made in heaven – comfortable, familiar, and well, just perfect. It’s a trek and it’s the bomb. It felt like a bike I used to ride when I first moved to Richmond, but long since gave up. It was actually a wedding present from Marshall way back in the day…

First goal was to ride a trial run to the bus stop .7 miles away from my house. Ordinarily this would not be a big deal, I am in decent shape – I teach ballet and take class every once in awhile, but currently, I have zero energy thanks to the very reasons I need the bike. I also weigh about 2 pounds at the moment – again, thank you stress. So it may take awhile before I am popping wheelies… Oh and did I mention the mammoth hill in between my house and the bus stop? Um, yes. I’m sure I can do this.

So me, my bike, and my storm trooper bike helmet made the .7 miles no problem, and the return trip down the hill is a blast! I forgot how much fun it is to ride, and my ass is going to look ahhmmazing in six months. See photo below for just how ahhhmmazing.

Tomorrow I will attempt to ride my bike to the bus stop in a timely fashion, load my bike on the right bus onto the handy bike rack provided by the kind people of GRTC, get on the bus, pay with my bus pass, get off at the correct stop, unload my bike, ride it to the theater, work for 8ish hours, and make the return trip. So glamorous. My life rocks. I’ll let you know how it goes.

As soon as I feel stronger, I hope to ride all the way to work. It’s such a strange thing to be so focused on such simple survival basics like transportation, groceries, supplies, but that is the reality of the situation. Needs come to the forefront, because they have to, because I have to function – the family has to function. I also know this situation in all of its breadth and complexities has the capacity to break me – health, heart, spirit. I see it. I feel it breathing down my neck, wrapped around my bones, tightening around my heart. I feel the cracks, the weaknesses, the weariness, where it is pulling too hard and where I could give way. And so I just keep turning away from that possibility, and refusing to let this be the thing that takes me down. I am humble. I am reduced. I am scared, but I am also stubborn, focused, and disciplined. Me and my ass will survive this…and we will be fantastic. Glorious even. Maybe I should start writing motivational letters to my ass concerning that mammoth hill. Just a thought. It will go something like this…

Dear Ass,

We can do this. I know that it feels like fire climbing up our thighs and moving right to the center of our maximus glutes, but we are stronger than the pain. I know it feels insurmountable, but this mammoth hill is nothing. Nothing. We’ve got this, and our jeans will thank us come November. Dig down. Dig deep. Breathe. Focus. We’re behind (ha!) you, and if we do this, if we can find a way to make all of this work, and survive, I promise to take us all on the Nordstrom’s shopping trip of life with all of the saved cash from gas and parking when it’s over.

With Sincere Devotion,

All the Rest of Us


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