Tuesday, March 15, 2016

What have I become?

A song flooded my mind the other day on a long, painful ride...

I hurt myself today
To see if I still feel
I focus on the pain
The only thing that's real
-Hurt, by Johnny Cash

I chose to head out solo on this slog (beautiful slog I should say) for several reasons. First, the only place I ever truly called home was put on the market that morning. Second, I found myself in the situation where every time I looked in the mirror, I had no connection with the person looking back. It was if I were looking at a complete stranger, and I had even gotten to the point of avoiding mirrors because it was so startling. 

I know we all go through gradual changes over time, and this non-acknowledgement had nothing really to do with the normal aging process, instead I honestly didn't know who I was and what I had become. Two of the things that defined me still made sense—being a personal trainer and a cyclist. Being a wife, a community organizer, an activist, a good friend to those I care about no longer fit. In what felt like a very short time span (but one really lasting a year for some of the changes and several years for others) I had become something completely different and most of me was terribly numb to it.

I cannot make you understand. I cannot make anyone understand what is happening inside of me. I cannot even explain it to myself. 
                                              -The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
And so with this ride, I chose to go out and try to find myself again. Feel pain, joy, the elements. Hear the first spring peepers, a plethora of songbirds, the wind in the pines and remaining oak leaves left from last fall. Go on my own terms, at my own speed, with no push and no demands.

It wasn't pretty. I wasn't fast. I'm not really sure I "found" myself. I did feel pain. I did cherish the nature around me. It was a start. A start of a new a different life as well as a new season. Summer is coming and things are bound to improve just as I'm bound to reinvent myself.