The other day I went mountain biking. It was my third mountain bike ride of the season. Mountain biking is a secondary sport for me. My husband likes it a lot and is aggressive with it. I'm OK. It's a way to get exercise. It's fun. But it's not my go-to sport that inspires me to get up at o-dark thirty like skiing and surfing.
I was on a familiar trail--Narrow due to overgrowth from a wet spring and a bit washed out from the heavy winter. But the trail was flat. I rode onto a section that had rocks and roots sticking out. I clicked out my left foot from the pedal so it was free. I rode over a rock and my bike began to tip. I slowly leaned left and fell. I lay on my back on the ground.
I lay there, wavering between anger and whining - wanting to quit the ride. As I lay there, I felt small. "I wanna go home!"
I managed to get up and complete the ride, but was guarded the rest of the ride. I chose routes that would challenge me less. Really, I just wanted to finish the planned ride -- and be home!
By the time this is being published, I will be back in Hawaii, putting in my 10-hour days trying to work my way up to the BIG WAVES. There, when I'm practicing new moves needed to work the bigger waves, I KNOW I will wipe out. Being picked up and thrown by the Pacific Ocean, churned under, sometimes way under, maybe being banged by my board, is rough and kind of scary. But, I never then float on my back, feeling "small" and thinking "I wanna go home." I only want to catch the next one and see if I can tweak my move a little better and ride the wave a little longer.
TODAY'S HOW TO
Our personalities are not simply this way or that way. Honestly, I DO feel a bit of a bad ass on the waves, no matter how often they thrash me. On my recent bike ride, I felt small and wanted to go home - from one lousy fall.
I haven't formulated a "lesson" from this fall. I've just noted it as an example of our split personalities -- one which hit me clearly. It has made me think about other splits in my personality. I can walk into a courtroom to make a tough argument and feel confident about "me," even if there are points I might lose. But I often walk into a simple social setting and am self-conscious about what others might think about what I say or do.
Maybe by just honestly observing, I'll tend over time to be a little more the bad ass way and a little less the "small me" way.
After already writing and loading this blog to publish, I went out again on a bike ride. This time, as I was making a sharp turn, I lost my balance, fell and slammed my face into the ground. I lay there, face on the ground for awhile. OUCH! WAH! Lip going numb (that's going to swell). Blood along the side of my nose (makeup isn't going to cover this one). I whined my way straight home.