I've been feeling like I needed to start writing again. It's been a while, and I feel so rusty - like I've forgotten how. Folks say it's like riding a bike...
I haven't ridden a bike for a while, either. I used to bike often. We would take our little family on a biking outing - me and Jay and three little boys on three little bikes. Then we bought a bike trailer for the baby and Jay pulled it behind his bike. He would go in the front and I would take the rear, making sure we didn't lose anyone. At the time, we lived in a very small town, so the roads were safe. When we moved to the Seattle area, the biking continued because there were so many beautiful bicyle trails. Our favorite went along the banks of the Sammammish River and had frequent parks. Jay would come home from dinner, announce that he wanted to go biking, and start rounding up the kids. I'd take whatever I was making for dinner, attempt to fashion it into something we could take on a picnic (casserole portions wrapped in a tortilla sound good?), and off we'd go.
I like to bike with my kids. I rode with them to school every morning, all the way through my pregnancy with Angel. I loved the ability to get somewhere faster than my lumbering belly usually let me. We got some pretty funny looks, my bike, my belly, and me.
Since then however, the cover on my bike seat rotted off. My tires went flat. I wasn't strong enough to haul three little kidlets in the trailer. We didn't ride any more.
A couple of months ago, I thought I'd ride anyway. It had been a while, but hey, it's just like riding a bike, right? Running late to school helped me make my decision. Angel was alread zipping up the street on her pink bicycle and the twins hopped on their little red bikes, and I didn't want to run alongside them again, so I pulled out David's bicycle. The seat was good - the tires were pumped. I threw my leg over the center bar and we were off. The children were delighted that Mom - Mom of all people! - was riding a bike with them. They don't know that I used to ride lots. To them, it was novel and fun. And we made it to school on time.
I rode home again, enjoying the... wind in my hair! Say that like it was a shampoo commercial.
When I got home, I rode the bike up the neighbor's driveway close to the gate going into our backyard. I swung my foot over the seat - and missed. The front tire caught the edge of the grass, my foot caught on the seat, and bike and I went down in a most ungraceful slow-motion disaster.
I untangled my foot, rubbed my scraped palms together, and realized that if I tried to stand I would immediately be back on the ground. So I sat there on the neighbor's driveway and gave thanks. I was thankful that I didn't appear to be seriously hurt. I was grateful that my knee was numb enough that it didn't hurt yet. I was grateful that no one watched me fall. I was grateful that my own front door was less than 50 painfully hobbling steps away. I was grateful that I didn't wreck my son's bike because I'd never hear the end of that one!
After a few painful minutes, I slowly got up, put the bike in out bike rack, limped to the house and crawled back in bed. I spent a week shuffling around the house and a month not doing anything which required kneeling. I still have a tender lump at the base of my knee, but I'm all functional.
I'm so thankful for bodies that heal. And hopefully, getting back into writing will be better than "just like riding a bike."