I used to think life was crazy, trying to balance all the things seemed almost impossible. No matter what I tried, if I was hell bent on a goal, some other things got left out, cast aside, or neglected. I tried so hard to check all the boxes, sometimes getting only tiny slivers of sleep in order to try and get it all done.
Then I fell in love, big time and next thing ya know, Rachel was moving in. Things changed, I was priority #1 no longer. Household happiness was no longer achieved by seeking out a singular experience of my choosing. It was a tough transition. It really is difficult to let go of ones personal goals when that was everything for so long. I built my life around that, I found things that challenged me, then I set out to try and do it. I had no social life, I worked jobs that gave me flexibility, I had no savings, no health insurance, I lived a fairly bare bones life that put almost everything in the goal box. The other side is Rachel helped me get my shit together which is a really good thing considering what happened next…
Then we had a baby, got married, and bought a house all in less than 5 months! This is a level of responsibility was never on my radar, and its deeply life changing. Its not like life ended, but a whole new life is birthed along with a baby. I don’t regret my decisions at all, everyday I am so grateful for this choice along life’s path, no matter how difficult. I love my wife and baby daughter so much it hurts sometimes. I want everything for them both, and I try so hard to make their dreams come true. But I still feel that pull of adventure and challenge, and now I sleep even less than ever trying to make it all happen.
Everything is all well and good, life is full, bills are getting paid, my girls are flourishing, and then I get excited. It might seem like I’m a fairly un-exciting, stoic kind of guy, but I get ideas in my head and they burn like hell in there till I bring them out. While I never stopped racing bikes, I’m burning to do it more. The past few weeks have seen a little break in my work hours, combined with an incredibly warm late Fall, have allowed more miles to go rolling under my wheels and it has felt quite amazing. Sunday I was out on a rebuilt 29er that is now a gravel bike. The bike felt so fast, the wheels flashing under me, the rush of air, feeling that bit of burning in my lungs and legs. The feeling goes deep into my soul and awakes my inner adventurer. I begin to dream of bigger things, lots of bigger things, then I look at the time and turn my wheels around and I head home. I am always so happy to get home to my lovely girls, but part of me always wants to be still spinning those pedals, feeling that air, seeing the world around me change.
Its hard to know that there is something inside of you that is thirsting for more and is always wanting to be set free, while at the same time knowing the most important people in my life are depending upon me for so much. Its a wild ride to feel these powerful things inside me, often pulling me in different directions, both seeking fulfillment. Finding balance these days seems more impossible than ever before, in fact I reflect upon what I thought was so hard and almost laugh at myself, there was so much less to take care of. Now it is far more complicated, the reasons far more precious and important, but the rewards are also Huge! That is where I am at, trying to find more time to ride and pursue those dreams, while also taking care of my family and working enough to keep the roof over our heads and moving life forward. I am trying so hard to make it work and make everyone happy that it takes my head spin!
“I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live”
George Bernard Shaw
I’m not taking the easy path, I’m taking this shit head on and seeing what I can make out of the rest of this life.
Jefe – thank you for continuing to share beautiful reality…your bike is pointed in the right direction and has gotten you this far…
Awesome post and congrats!