These are my pre-trip thoughts to the potential bike trip this weekend. Personal. I do this record my thoughts before trips, which are always a good snapshot to me. Plans are uncertain, but I have gone from “if this doesn’t work out, it’s OK” to “Hellya this is right up my alley.” As I wrote before, I had a panic attack last wednesday which I’m still feeling the effects of; I haven’t slept well in fear of another attack but I took out some of that anxiety on my bike rather than staying in bed, although I physically feel fairly weak from not sleeping/pretty much constant adrenaline from anxiety=muscle ache.
It’s 11:23 pm of the day before the day before the trip, and I STILL don’t know if I’ve got the proper gear. I’m worrying. Hard.
-how many other people lie awake wondering if they can make a trip, depending on equipment.
-I could have worked more to buy said equipment, but working does not necessarily an adventurer make. I’ve always pissed away money in some form or the other, so no matter how much I worked, I’d still cheap out and no one in the world has enough money to buy all the gear that’s necessary. Plus, this is an intro bike ride, where people aren’t expected to have all the proper gear. But I could at least have a bike, and it was my fault for missing the meeting to discuss bikes.
I HAVE to make this work.
I feel so good right now. I feel like myself. The self that likes to go snowboarding and likes to socializing, the self that is me. I can’t wait to ride next to cars and feel a little dangerous; I can’t wait to be miserable and wet; I can’t to talk a lot; I can’t wait to sleep without a dream.
I asked myself this past month, without snowboarding: if I had a ticket to Whistler, would I want to go? At first the question was would I pay for a ticket to whistler, and then it was would you go to whistler. Because if the snow was only slush, and you hadn’t ridden for a month, and knew you wouldn’t be riding afterwards, would you feel like it wasn’t worth it? Is it worth it? That question has riddled me.
The answer, is, of course, it is of course worth it. Too many people give up on their dreams because they rationalize their way out of almost getting what they want but being afraid to touch it. If that person is me, I don’t think I would be able to stand myself, but there are many dreams I have rationalized myself out of, and I will not let it happen again. I would like to singularly tell everyone: your dreams are always worth it. Happiness lies there.
When I think about snowboarding, I love life. I think I’m the luckiest person in the world; I can’t believe I’m so lucky. I get to snowboard, I get to meet people, I get to make stories out of it, I get to play, I get to learn, I get to love, I get adrenaline, I get everything. Just like everybody else who has passions and the time/money to follow them-and the permission from themselves to (this is essential, money or time does not a passion make)-, I get to live life to the fullest. Everyday is made more special when you love something or someone. It’s a cognition. This is no different.
Biking led me to snowboarding; now maybe it will lead me back. I love feeling like I don’t have anxiety. I love feeling like I don’t hate everything, that I can get out of bed, that I can breathe…going mountain biking taught me nothing if not that I wasn’t breathing properly, and although it was strange to bike without breathing half the time, it’s the good memory of it that keeps me calm today. I need to be calm; I need to find or fix a bike, fit my gear, attach my gear, trace maps, coordinate meeting spots, make food, try out this bike that I’ve never ridden, all by tomorrow if I want this to happen. And I want it to happen, with all my heart, as much as I want snowboarding. If I didn’t have anxiety, this would be me. Last year when I first started snowboarding this was how I felt, all the time, able to deal with anything, like a normal person, without the accompanying aches and pains. And I won’t let anxiety beat me. Because anxiety, too, is a cognition, and anxiety says “Stop, it’s not worth it, you’re stupid, you don’t like this, you’re a loser, you’re incapable of it, you have no interest ,you hate life.” A stable mind might get away with thinking that, but I can’t, thoughts loop on repeat and I give in for months. I have everything to lose if I don’t live my life to the fullest. Not that you should beat yourself up for it either.