I don’t want to bore you all with bike talk. And though this blog has the bike theme present, it’s really about something all together more.
The other day my little sister calls me and says she wants to start riding. It’s a health thing. A get in better shape thing. Not so much a weight loss plan. But a feel better and get in better shape plan. So we talked bikes. And we looked at bikes on line. I tried not to overwhelm her with talk that means nothing to her yet. But I might have veered that way once or twice and had to rein myself back in. At first we were talking about her buying a bike. Of course I am all about bike buying. Love it! But I didn’t want her to buy the wrong bike. Or be sad or upset about spending money and finding out it wasn’t what she wanted or even what she wanted to do. I offered to bring her some of my bikes so she could ride as much as she wanted and discover what kind of riding she wanted to do. We arranged for me to go to her house, and get her biked up.
When I hung up the phone my daughter said “wow Mamo, you’re changing people’s lives one at a time”. I thought, for real, I was going to tear up. It felt so good that she said that. That she knows how much I love this. And how much I want to share it.
It’s not the bike that matters most here. It’s what the bike does for people. It’s the things that people get out of exertion, sweating, laughing, fresh air, spending time together outside and away from the routine or the rigorous or the drudgery. Even a bike ride that ends up with rain pouring over you leaves you energized and flush with adrenaline. It’s something different. It’s fun even in the unexpected. It’s moments. Fun moments. Challenging moments. Sharing moments.
I want to inspire people to do these things. It doesn’t have to be about a bike. It can be whatever they want. I just want lives to be full of action. Forward motion. Literally and figuratively.
For me the bike is my mode of transportation. Transportation to a joyful and fun and challenging life. I so badly want others to know this kind of joy.
And today, I got to share a little bit of it with someone who means a great deal to me. She’s my baby sister. She didn’t get a great deal of schooling from me like most little sisters get from big sisters. I didn’t (and don’t) have a clue about make up, dresses, style of any kind, or other girly things. I was married and out of the house before she was a teenager. And though we spent a good bit of time together, I wasn’t the typical girly advisor. Sorry about that HL. 🙂
But today, today I got to give a little guidance. A little help. And it was so hard not to jump in and get her outfitted on a road bike with bike shorts and clipless pedals, and all of the over the top stuff I tend to digress to. I just took her the bikes and gave a little starting advise on seat position and getting started. Just ride.
Ride with husband. Ride with son. Ride for your self. It meant so much to me that she called me. It was a drive of love through the very thing I wish biking would lighten up: traffic. For crying out loud WHERE was everyone going today? But I made it through the craziness of 70 miles of highway to deliver some bikes.
The sun was shining. My heart was happy. I took some bikes to someone I love. I gave a little bit of help. But the most awesome thing of the entire day? One snap shot in my head, a picture that no one else could have given me. My sister, her husband, and their little boy. They were all on bikes, giving them a little test run. Way down the street I could see them. I could hear them talking to each other. Trying something together. Being a family. Soaking up the newly warm sun. Even if they never get on bikes again, that moment is there. Always.
It wasn’t about the bike. It’s about that picture that I will always have in my heart.