Sunday, March 10, 2013

following a dream

I still remember the first time I flipped through a magazine at the thrift store and saw an ad for a bicycle ride across America as a fund raiser.  It started a dream in my mind. From that moment, I knew I would someday do just across America.  I hadn't biked in years.  The bike I owned was a cheap Huffy  10 speed from the 80's.  It fit when I was 9 inches shorter.  I mentioned to a friend of mine who was a biker that I wanted to start riding and he said, "The harder you pedal, the faster you'll be."   I dusted off my old bike and took it out for a spin.  The first few minutes were easy but as the ride stretched out (I'm talking more than 5 minutes), I could feel my legs not being happy with me so I chanted his words to me over and over in my mind the whole 5 miles.  I was dead when I got home.  I was entirely out of shape!  But I was not deterred.  I wanted it more than before.  I joined a gym and worked out 5-+6 times a week for 3 months straight.  Then I decided I was ready to try a bike ride again.  It was so much easier than the time before.  I have never looked back.  

Biking has helped me to set goals and to work toward them like when I wanted to do a century (a 100 mile ride in one day).  I worked on my mileage and endurance, slowly building up until I could do.  It taught me to take one step (or pedal stroke) at a time like when I encountered a hill so steep that I didn't dare stop pedaling because I knew that I would start rolling backward before I even had a chance to set my foot down ...and I made it to the top without stopping!  It taught me that sometimes dreams can take a long time to come true but that doesn't mean you should give up...because the journey to it is just as wonderful as what you hope will happen once you reach your goal.  But aside from what it has taught me, it has helped me in many ways.  It's been my therapy when I was going through dark times.  It has helped heal one of my knee disorders.  It has given me freedom.  It has helped me develop a sense of healthy self-esteem.  It has taught me to take the highs with the lows (though I sometimes do much better than others).  It has taught me that I need to back in the saddle when I fall.  

On one particular ride, I was feeling so good.  I was feeling on the top of the world.  I stopped and took this picture.  

Less than 10 minutes later, I was in an accident that gave me 4 wounds that had to be cleaned out at the ER and took months to heal from (this is from 3 months later).  

The accident happened when I was going about 30 MPH when I came on a very tight turn.  I made the turn, but my bike didn't.  It was about 6 months before the swelling in my hip/thigh went down enough for me to get back on my bike.  I had panic attacks every time I had to go down a hill but even more so when it had a turn in it.  It took two years, but I finally got rid of the panic attacks.  I still feel a little uncomfortable and am more cautious than I used to be but I think that that's pretty normal.

I haven't reached my dream of crossing the country by bike.  I have no idea if it will ever happen.  But that doesn't matter.  What matters is that I am enjoying the time I do get to spend on my bike and I savor the times I get to go touring.  I am learning to have joy in the journey regardless of how it turns out.  

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

some meal reminders

I recently dropped my phone in the sink (while I was sick) and my reflexes were pretty slow.  I didn't get it out in time.  It died and I lost all my photos from September to now because that was when I last updated my phone to my computer.  We got a new phone for me and I have old pictures so I was looking through them and found pics of past meals.  Some I had forgotten about and  gave me fresh ideas...and even old ideas reminded.  I have changed my eating so much that I am always at a loss for what to eat.  So I am going to start posting some of these ideas to help keep them in my mind.  

This is a salad with lettuce, beets, tomatoes, olives and avocado.

Carrot noodles (shaved carrots) and peas in a creamy avocado sauce.

A tomato/eggplant stack with cashew cheese between each layer on a bed of lettuce and topped with parsley.

A blended raw soup of peas, carrots, avocado, almond milk and nutritional yeast.

Monday, March 4, 2013

making jewelry

I spent a week being sick and the last two weeks getting over it.  This past weekend I slept 30 hours!!  I was not able to function.  I woke up on Sunday t go to church but moved so slow I only made it to the last hour, came home and changed back into my pajamas and slept some more.  I am feeling a bit better after that sleep fest but still need more, especially with the way they're working me at work.  They have me working in the warehouse and my boss basically told me today that my job is shifting to be a warehouse worker.  I am not cut out for that anymore.  I've got carpal tunnel from all the pulling I'm doing.  

Anyway, that week/end I was sick, I didn't hardly sleep.  That weekend was the worst of it and I decided to make jewelry to keep my mind off my troubled body.  I ended up making 14 pairs of earrings and 7 necklaces.  That Sunday was our anniversary so to show him I love him, I took a shower and got dressed in something other than pajamas...clothes I would be willing to be seen in outside the home...we didn't go anywhere...but I was dressed, clean and my hair was combed.  That took a lot of effort.  

Here's the original 5 necklaces I made.

Then a shot with all 7 (though you can barely see the white one on the outer edge.

And most of the earrings.

They were fun to make and helped to keep my mind off my sickness.  I was surprised by how much I got done with my brain being turned off.  I already had all the beads and findings so I didn't have to leave the house to make anything...bonus!

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