Bike (Life) Fit
I am starting to feel like I am emerging from a fog after more than two years. I am slowly starting to be able to go beyond the moment and start appreciating life as it unfolds. For a long time now, since the accident, I have been living very much ‘in the moment’ and very much focussed on my personal situation. I just didn’t have the ‘bandwidth’ to be able to think beyond the moment. This has been a bit of a relief though, I feel, as not thinking beyond the moment has allowed me to focus on my rehab one step at a time without worrying about the future too much. Unfortunately this has thrust the responsability about worrying about the future on those closest to me. This has not been easy for them I know, especially my wife Cathy.
But she has been an incredible source of support and managed our lives incredibly well. I look forward to being able to take a bit of the pressure off her as I emerge from my fog a little bit more. I am sure that we will never be able to return to the way things used to be, but I think that I can contribute.
This has been a constant learning process: finding out exactly what I can do now, both cognatively and physically. It is a challenge: testing my boundaries safely. Most of the professionals helping me in my rehab over the last 2 years have been careful not to advise me of possible limits so as to give me chances to recover beyond perhaps any expectations. That, I have learned, is the funny thing about brain injuries: The brain is such a complex thing and each injury is so unique that the experts seem never that exact about recovery prospects. So one of the things that I have been working through is finding the right ‘fit’ for me in a new chapter of my life.
I recently worked with Pierre-Paul at Cycle Paul as he used an amazing fit machine to form the base measurements of my new cycle. Hooked up to a special computer, his expertise worked in tandem to explore my new limitations in terms of bike fit. As he adjusted measurements on the fly, he was able to see exactly my limitations in a safe environment that mimicked riding on the road. Oh, how I wish that I had such equipment to allow me to safely explore all my other limitations!
But that is one of the challenges of my new reality, testing my limits and trying to push them. Like I will do in May when I try to get some enjoyment from walking that Bahamian beach with my family. I just don’t know if I will be able to walk on the undulating sandy surface. Lord, there must be another metafor buried in there!
Next summer I will also be learning my limits in terms of riding and trying to safely push these limits. It will be fun and frustrating I am sure. And much like the rest of my life.
With testing my new reality in terms of riding, I will truly benefit from the support af many I am sure. Pierr-Paul will help me build this pretty unusual ‘trike’. Many family and friends will be encouraging me. A few may even help out on the road I’m sure. Having this support surrounding me will continue to propell me forward to new heights as I work to find my new fit in life.