I am in the flats, out of the mountains, and making my way north to Venice. Camping will be a bit more awkward now, though I cannot say what lies ahead. In the meantime, I am sitting outside a closed Caffe in Faenza, a bicycle culture city that puts Portland, OR to shame.
I am ready, in a sense, to get home and get all doctored up with science and machines. It will be sad to leave behind this world of adventure, however. Today was the first day I got stung by a bee… What’s an adventure without being stung? I am accustomed now to hanging out and being a host to the organisms of this planet. I sit at coffee shops and ants fall out of my hair. They crawl out of my t-shirt and tickle my thighs. Bugs are constantly surrounding me and I can’t help it, nor care to. Today, I ventured into a Caffe with 3 older gentlemen amateur cyclists that offered me coffee. Upon walking in, I flicked my hair and went to run my dirty fingers through it. There just so happened to be something GIGANTIC on the back of my head… wha?! BUUZZZZ!!! HUH?!?! OWWWWW!!! Stung right in the left thumb tip! Youchers, let’s just hope it helps with my rhuemtoid arthritis!
It is great being the king of my own time. Decisions, they are mine. I own my time and don’t reserve it for things I don’t enjoy. I rather reserve it for things I enjoy almost too much. Yesterday, I went to the COOP (supermarket) for my dietary needs. Now, this grocer doesn’t carry cans of soup, my usual dinner, so I had to make a decision. My decision… Eat a sandwich for dinner and for lunch (which is usually the sando) will be this entire Rotisserie Chicken! BAM! Dirty, hairy, scary me sitting in the shade of a tree in a park devouring an entire chicken. Worth it? Yes.
Decisions? Growing up with arthritis I was faced with a lot of choices. I believe I would be a different person if I had lived a “controlled” lifestyle. Things that were not good for me like jumping on a trampoline or playing soccer I was advised against by my Pediatric Rhuematologist. However, he specifically said things like, “But I can’t rule your life, you make your own decisions.” I owe a lot to my mother and father for allowing me to be me. For me to have my own fun even if it was “bad” for my disease. I was given my own choices at a young age and I lived with them. I played soccer, I jumped on trampolines, and I was as active as I could be. I probably worried my mother and father but they never held me back.
Now a days, being on my second bicycle tour, I can feel the unparralled gains of not living in a bubble because of my disease. If I want to do something, I do it. If I am scared, I pull through. If it hurts, I do less the next day. If it hurts to much or has really no more gain to me, I stop. I know my body. I also know that I don’t know my body fully and what it’s limits are. I have never been held back to test these limits. Because of this, I have learned to push beyond what may have been deemed “unrealistic” when I was kid. I control my life and listen to my body, I create my own outcomes, I manage it all with everything I have, and I love this life that I live.
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