riding bitch

The life of a writer and survivor of loss.


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Biker’s credo

Just found this on another blog http://motorcyclecolorado.com/blog and wanted to share. It reminds me a lot of Kaz. 

Biker’s Credo

I ride purely, and only, because it is fun and offers me the opportunity to meet others of like mind.

I ride because I enjoy the freedom I feel from being exposed to the elements, and the vulnerability to the danger that is intrinsic to riding.

I do not ride because it is fashionable to do so.

I ride my machine, not wear it. My machine is not a symbol of status. It exists simply for me, and me alone. My machine is not a toy. It is an extension of my being, and I will treat it accordingly, with the same respect as I have for myself.

I strive to understand the inner workings of my machine, from the most basic to the most complex. I will learn everything I can about my machine, so that I am reliant upon no one but myself for its health and well-being.

I strive to constantly better my skill of control over my machine. I will learn its limits, and use my skill to become one with my machine so that we may keep each other alive. I am the master, it is the servant. Working together in harmony, we will become an invincible team.

I do not fear death. I will, however, do all possible to avoid death prematurely. Fear is the enemy, not death. Fear on the highway leads to death, therefore I will not let fear be my master. I will master it.

My machines will outlive me. Therefore, they are my legacy. I will care for them for future bikers to cherish as I have cherished them, whoever they may be.

I do not ride to gain attention, respect, or fear from those who do not ride, nor do I wish to intimidate or annoy them. For those who do not know me, all I wish from them is to ignore me. For those who desire to know me, I will share with them the truth of myself, so that they might understand me and not fear others like me.

I will never be the aggressor on the highway. However, should others be the aggressor towards me, their aggression will be dealt with in as severe a manner as I can cast upon them.

I will show respect to other bikers more experienced or knowledgeable than I am. I will learn from them all I can.

I will not show disrespect to other bikers less experienced or knowledgeable than I am. I will teach them what I can.

It will be my task to mentor new riders, who so desire, into the lifestyle of the biker, so that the breed shall continue. I shall instruct them, as I have been instructed by those before me.

I shall preserve and honor traditions of bikers before me, and I will pass them on unaltered. I will not judge other bikers on their choice of machine, their appearance, or their profession. I will judge them only on their conduct as bikers and as a human being.

I am proud of my accomplishments as a biker, though I will not flaunt them to others. If they ask, I will share them.

I will stand ready to help any other biker who truly needs my help. I will never ask another biker to do for me what I can do for myself.

I am not a part-time biker. I am a biker when, and wherever I go. I am proud to be a biker, and I hide my chosen lifestyle from no one.

I ride because I love freedom, independence, and the movement of the ground beneath me. But most of all, I ride to better understand myself, my machine, the lands in which I ride, and to seek out and know other bikers like myself. –

–Author Unknown

 


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Mountaintop

As I continue to heal from a state of heartbrokenness, I am reminded of the phrase stated by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in his last speech: I’ve been to the mountaintop.”

In the context of my life this phrase means, I have known, loved, and been loved by a Good Man.

I lost this man 3 years into our relationship (before we had worked all the kinks out), 11 days after our wedding, to a horrible disease which, coupled with a devastating motorcycle accident, was simply too much to overcome.

Shortly after he passed a girlfriend said to me, “Well, at least you’ve known love.” At the time, the pain was still so fresh I couldn’t find much relief in those words. But even on my darkest days I knew on some instinctual level that she was right.

I had experienced something few people do in a lifetime, the kind of love that makes you walk on hot coals to try and save the other, the kind of love that you read about in novels, the kind of love that makes you write love letters for a year after the other dies.

For a long time, and a variety of reasons, I didn’t always feel that I deserved this love. There had been moments when I doubted or disrespected it due to immaturity and insecurity. Just as the relationship was hitting its stride, he got diagnosed with a terminal illness and everything changed overnight. As things progressed at a deliriously fast pace, a part of me began to awaken, while another part began to shut down in order for the rest of me to keep functioning.

Once he was gone, I had a volcanic eruption of heartbreak and guilt, not uncommon for the surviving spouse/caregiver/less-than-perfect partner. Though my husband had forgiven my shortcomings, I found it difficult to forgive myself. Every time I thought of a good memory, a painful one reared up in front of it, like an eclipse blocking out the sun. It took every ounce of strength to not follow him to the other side.

Another friend told me, “Just hang in there and keep breathing.” Others reassured me that one day I would feel more grateful than devastated, more happy than sad. I couldn’t imagine it, but I also didn’t give up.  He never did and wouldn’t want me to.

Now it’s been 1 year, 6 months and 9 days since I watched him take his last breath, and I can say with cautious optimism that things are better.

I am still heartbroken. I still cry. I still talk to him, write to him, ache and reach out for him. But instead of feeling like my soul has been crushed, it more often feels lifted. Instead of dwelling on all that was lost, I think more often on how to rebuild. Instead of feeling guilty for not knowing better then, I focus on being better now.

Part of this transformation is simply Time. Part of it is all the writing and healing-work I’ve been doing this past year and a half. Part of it is the continued love and support of my family and all of our friends. Part of it is Ruby, my new puppy, who literally re-awakens and strengthens my heart every day.

So, I have been to the mountaintop. And I have seen the Promised Land. I couldn’t get there with my husband, but I have looked over and know that it exists. And in the knowing is the transformation.

Obama inauguration party 1/20/09

Wedding day 4/22/11