Saturday, April 30, 2011

The little things

holding onto hope

Hi friends. It feels like there's so much to tell you. I swear there are so many stories that I haven't quite figured out how to tell. I'm just barely keeping up with the status of my mind/body/soul. Capturing the juicy moments and retelling them in pretty prose seems like a long ways away, if it'll ever happen at all.  Still, I needed to write to tell you these things tonight, as a way of staying grounded in reality, in community, with the sense that people on the other end know how things are going and are there rooting for our wellness and our joy.

The big fat truth right now is this shit is physically demanding. And my body is so so tired. And my mind isn't too far behind my body. But my spirit knows how to frickin' fly. And that's really what I'm riding on more than anything else--a whole lotta mojo, excitement, and big fat love. That's it. Without those things I'd be totally shot.

Things with Brian are really really good. Our differences are glaringly obvious--we cause pain in each others asses on a daily basis--but it couldn't matter less. The pain-in-the-ass-ness is a nice point of reference as to how committed we are to communicating honestly and working with each others truths. There's just so much love in this thing and for that I am really really thankful (infinitely). I feel so lucky, every day, to be together on this adventure. I know we will look back on this with such amazement and joy. I feel like we already are.

I've been reading Lessons of a Lakota by Billy Mills and he talks about how to be happy no matter what. I'm practicing this as much as possible--choosing my perspective, meditating on things that make me happy, deciding to laugh when it rains and pours and blows gusts of wind in my face on a daily basis (or laugh at the fact that I'm crying). Quite honestly, I have very low expectations for things outside of my control. I'm not quite fatalistic (usually), but I'm not surprised (and therefore not let down) when the weather is crap, my body feels like shit, or plans are changed with the flip of a switch. These things feel like nothing next to the fear-ridden places my mind went before the trip. Spend enough time in worried anticipation, deal with all your demons before hand, and nothing will phase you when shit hits the fan. I wouldn't say it's the best method out there, but it's what I've used so far.

You belong among the wildflowers

I'm really enjoying taking photo after photo on my iPhone and I hope all the instagram updates don't feel like a flood on your stream. I lugged my beautiful DSLR camera with me, but I've hardly used it and I'm thinking about mailing it home to lose some weight on my bike. We're trimming down here in Bloomington. My knees have been hurting and carrying less weight might help. At this point, I'd be happy with one dress, one pair of pants, two shirts and a sweatshirt. That's pretty much all I've worn for a month and the ease of never having to choose an outfit really suits me. Especially when the outfit I do have is damn cute! We've been talking a lot about writing a series of gear posts--what's good, what's bad, what's needed, what's not--in the food, clothing, and bike gear categories. Would that be of interest to you? Oh my god, I've done you a total disservice by not writing about the way I smell. Okay--I'll do that, too. You'll laugh your ass off, I promise.

Also, I can't tell you how often people ask me how much weight I've lost. For the record: none. Do I look skinnier? Probably. I'm honestly not thinking about it, though. We eat a LOT because we're hungry all the time. (Although, I'm feeling less hungry these days than when we first started, which is apparently the way it goes with this kind of thing). My body does crave vegetables like nobody's business and I do my best to listen to my body's cravings whenever possible. Hell-o... this thing's gotta last me seven more months!

Speaking of which... my body is practically begging me for a deep tissue massage. Next week we'll be in Florida for Bri's brother's wedding. I know what I'll be treating myself to... budget, be damned!

I'm really missing comfort tonight. Which is part of the reason why I needed to write this simple post with little updates about the little things that occupy my existence right now... To know that someone on the other end is reading, that there are people out there who are with us, somehow... even if that's a total illusion and it's just fine to be in this alone... Tonight, my heart is just wanting comfort in the shape of really being seen and known. You know how that feels?

During my happiness meditations, the feeling of being with my parents keeps resurfacing--the tickle of my dad's bearded face, my mom's roaring laugh, being fed snacks and silly reality TV shows, being held by the people who raised me. It has me teary eyed and smiley. This body feels so far from home. I am stretching so much and it's enlivening and painful and expansive and scary. I feel really alive and really thankful.

What makes you feel really happy or alive or thankful? You have no idea how much I'd love to know.


  1. I am following your adventure. Thank you.

    I don't think that it is an adventure which I would embark on, but I really enjoy hearing about it and seeing it through your eyes.

    I am able to create. That is what makes me feel real, happy, and alive.

    ~ Julz

  2. We are with every grind of the pedal, every squish of the body parts ;-0, every uphill (and hopefully extraordinary downhill). Your Ohio aunties want you to know how much we admire and love you...and not for just riding the bike. Take care.

  3. I am thankful for sunny days in rock creek park with lots of food and friendly new people. Thankful for the ability to let go of some things/energy/feelings to create space for other things/energy/feelings. Being real with people and honesty all around usually make me feel really alive, though not always happy! I love you both! Intentional time in person or over the phone with you usually makes me feel really alive, happy, and thankful as well! :) Lets talk soon...

  4. I definitely feel you with the parents resurfacing. This past Easter was a day that I spent thinking so heavily about my family. I spent years not appreciating them fully, and these days I think about my father's freckles or the way my mother holds the steering wheel and I tear up. Sometimes I, too, feel so far from home, but then I look around and realize that where I am is so wonderful.

    Love you!

  5. awesome people like you guys, and running in the rain

  6. I am reading these post as you are on your way to soon be heading home. But it is like a little story, to sit here and read them. The courage you two have to do this together floors me. How much you must be learning about one another, kindness, patience, and love. I am honors to be able to experience the trip through your words and photos.

    I would love to one day take a trip like this I would really love to hear all about the gear you are using. What works, what doesn't.

    Thank you for sharing your adventure with us.