… and it is going great!
Since I decided to go on the trip, I’ve practiced on the motorcycle more than I have since I first learned. Lots of fun and lots of cursing, a little sunburn.
I’ve gained a lot of confidence. One of the biggest changes is that my very mechanically inclined wife added a Brown side stand, which is much much much easier to use and takes away 95% of my fear of dismounting. Thank you, sweetie!
I’ve haven’t quite fulfilled my mission of discussing the heroes journey as it happens — I tend to do it more afterwards. Well, it’s a new day, so here we go!
I got an 800cc motorcycle – quite a lot bigger and heavier than my 250. I was searching for a 650, but just wasn’t finding one, so I went with this one. It is rather nice, but a little intimidating.
It was just pride that caused me to hurt myself.
After two incidents I was just not feeling the love with this motorcycle. The first was a fall at a stop — I wasn’t hurt, my wife got the bike back up for me, and back home without more trouble.
The second time, as I was dismounting, it started to fall, and instead of letting it, I held it up, at the expense of hurting my shoulder. It was just pride that had me do that, as I had practiced picking it up and it is doable.
So, now I am going on a group riding trip over Labor Day weekend — a very easy trip designed for beginners — with some friends. They’ve been very encouraging and letting me know I don’t have to do things perfectly. But it is still pretty intimidating. So this morning, off I go on the bike to practice.
I am very sad and short on sleep. One of our dogs, Tater Pi, got sick last year. He has heart disease and is nearing the end of his short life.
Tater Pi is on multiple medications and special food – a diuretic to control the water retention, another to mitigate the bad effects of the diuretic on the kidneys, something for his heart arrhythmia, and others.
Lately, his breathing is often labored, it takes hand feeding and cajoling to get him to eat, and he is not quite his usual self.
We are taking him to the vet on Saturday to be evaluated. My wife and I have discussed his treatment extensively over the past 9 months – that we don’t want to go the route of surgery and specialists. He has gotten lots of treatment (oxygen, fluid drained, vet visits) plus love at home.
Even though we’ve weighed the pros and cons, it is difficult. We’ll get advice and try to determine whether it is time to euthanize him. But whether it is now or in a month, we are probably going to have to be judge, jury, and witness to his final moments eventually.
I am looking for a new, bigger motorcycle. I have an appointment later today and was starting to get very anxious.
My sweetheart suggested that I consider whether I was nervous (worried/concerned) or excited – anticipatory. She then said I could sit on her bike, which I’ve ridden pillion on (the polite way of describing being on the back), but thought was WAY too big for me both height and weight-wise.
Luckily it has a side stand. Lo and behold, I can actually put my feet flat on the ground. She drove it to the nearby school and let me ride it.
The pic is of me afterwards – very happy but still scared. I didn’t drop the bike or do anything stupid; I made several loops around the lot, with turns in both directions.
What you can’t see is my effort to not hyperventilate, the fact that I sat on the bike for several minutes before riding, to get used to the feel.
Yet, it feels very much like a success because it’s another time that I didn’t give in to the anxiety (read: fear).
Please Pull Forward
Don’t block traffic. Please pull forward.
This is a sign on several parking meters downtown. I guess drivers were causing traffic problems or fender benders by not making full use of the space and leaving part of their car in the driving lane.
It made me think about my life recently. The past month, I’ve had several events happen that, taken one at a time, would have caused me great anxiety in the past.
I still have some anxiety – but I’m handling it much better – because, well, stuff needs to be done and I’m just putting one foot in front of the other, not stopping in the lane,
I’m still in the thick of it. Self care is becoming more of a priority. I’m getting lots done.
I wish I could hold on to this energy and sense of self care.
But even if not, I will try to remember: keep on moving.
I’m not talking particularly about sports, but about engaging in any area of life.
I have a history of not doing things on the flimsiest of excuses. The excuses relate a lot to fear: of being embarrassed, of the unknown, of looking stupid, of being compared to someone else (when really, I probably do more of the comparing).
Vacationing (when I was single): I’ll get lonely. I don’t know where to go. It’s dangerous being in another place where I don’t know my way around.
Games I haven’t played before: I don’t know the rules very well so I’ll do something stupid. There’s no way I can do well.
Games I have played before: Everyone else is better than me and I’ll get frustrated. (And being frustrated makes me feel… you guessed it, embarrassed and stupid.)
Ugh, I am just tired of it.
Last weekend I went to a word puzzlers convention and more here. I’ve been before so I was familiar with it — lots of difficult puzzles (similar to crosswords), group games, etc. Someone asked me if I wanted to solve an cryptic crossword with them and I hemmed and hawed so they went away. Cryptics are more difficult than crosswords and people often help others solve them.
And then I thought, whoa. How am I going to have fun if I keep on saying no to things? So when someone else asked if I wanted to solve together, I said yes. It was thoroughly enjoyable, and I got a great lesson … even though I needed lots of help.
At points during the weekend, I still did sometimes get frustrated. But I tried to remember: I can’t have fun if I don’t play.
It’s been two weeks since my last post already! I had planned to write about some more specific feelings in shutting down my business, but I conveniently got distracted.
So I did get around to talking and thinking more specifically about my feelings regarding updating my social media to not show the business. I had feelings about people not only noticing, but thinking poorly about me; thinking that it would affect me.
“You wouldn’t worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do.”
It was pointed out to me that whether that happened or not, I might not know about it; if I knew that someone noticed, it might not be the response I expected; and no matter what the response was, did it really matter? I only have to worry about my side of the street, not what others are thinking of me. It sounds so easy, doesn’t it?
Quote credited to both Eleanor Roosevelt (http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/confidence and Ethel Barrett http://quotationsbook.com/quote/20729/#sthash.oVh0kGgH.dpbs). Most references are for Eleanor Roosevelt, but I’m not going to try to track down an actual reference work.
Oh, and I think I used “it’s” incorrectly in 60 miles an hour, part 2, but I’m going to let it stand for now.