Today marks the 180th day since my accident. It’s hard to believe that this time has gone by so fast and yet here I sit, six months later, writing down my thoughts. To say the least, this has not been a great time, here we are only a few weeks until Christmas and I am still not feeling fully up to speed. Although I have done some cycling and also a few spinning classes, my hip muscles are not what you would call at 100%. The aches still are there, sometimes worse especially at night after a day of walking and standing. It’s that gentle reminder that things take time to heal not just the physical but also the emotional wounds. The other day was one of our first really cold days and it also a day when my hip decided to act up, like a fussy toddler. Now, folks who have been through hip or knee replacements tell me that the change in weather does affect how they feel, but here I thought I would be immune to that issue. Of course not, the dampness, the cold all conspire to keep me from doing things I did just a few months ago with relative ease. Normally, I would have gone out for a ride, just put on my warm cycling gear, a couple of toe warmers and gloves, I’m all set. Now, I’ve had to fight that urge, take stock in how I’m feeling then decide if going out will do more harm than good. “Listen to your body,” the physical therapist told me before I was discharged from their care, “listen, it will tell you how far and how much to push yourself.” Although this is good advice it still bothers me that I just can’t get up and go like I did just 181 days ago.
I still get looks when I tell folks that I’m back out cycling, albeit, not anything like I did before but still getting out. What I consider a short mileage ride, they look at me and think I’m a bit “touched” without considering that my normal ride was twice what I’m doing now. What so many fail to understand is that I’m not just out there cranking off the miles, I’m actually able to shed off some of the excess mental stuff that gets all clogged up in my head. I am able to clear away those ice jams and open the flow. After a good long ride, I’m not only physical refreshed, I’m also emotionally refreshed. It feels like I’ve taken in a huge breath of cool fresh, clean air. Every part of my body and soul are cleansed from the toxic waste dumped on them during the day. This flushing out, is more effective than any kind of new age cleanse juice, this is a flushing out of those voices that seek so desperately to drown out the song in my heart. I can hear more clearly once I’m out on the road. As I get into a rhythm, my legs pumping up and down on the pedals, my tires racing over the pavement, that slight sound of the wind passing by my ears, suddenly I feel whole. My eyes are opened to the wonders all around me, a fox running across the street, the sound of birds in the trees, the laughter of children at play, the gentle gurgling of a small stream. Our connection with all that is around us, my own connection with God and nature that reminds me that there are are still deep mysteries I am being called to enter into.
So, I wait patiently and take my time to get back to where I was, but the mystery still beckons. In the silence of the night, as I lay awake in bed listening to my heart beating out its own song of life, I hear deep within the voice of the One who gently coaxes me to be unafraid to be creative.