…plus a ride report.
My skin is marked all over the place. Some of the marks are permanent scars, some are scratches, some marks are dirt that wipe off.
There’s the series of scars that remind me never to get into an abusive relationship again. Some of them (one on my arm, one on my hip) are still visible, while the scars inside (mental, emotional) have, for the most part, healed over. There are the small scars on my hand and ankles from my mom’s insane cat when I was younger. He would leap out from under furniture, dig his teeth into you, and hang on for dear life. I have a small, pin sized scar on my hand where I accidentally shoved a freshly sharpened pencil under the skin of my palm in the 4th grade. And then on my bottom lip, barely visible on the outside, I have the smallest half-moon scar from falling out a window at age 3, and biting through my lip. The inside of my mouth is worse off in that case, and I’ve had scar tissue removed twice, but it ends up giving me just the slightest pout in my bottom lip…so not a bad scar.
The scuffs and scabs doesn’t last nearly as long, and since getting my clipless pedals this year, I’ve had my fair share of those as well. I’ve never shied away from aggressive sports where injury is likely, and I expect it will happen many more times. Before taking up biking, I rode horses, tried to play roller derby (lots of falling there!), played roller hockey (street team), plus all the ridiculous things people do when younger, usually prefaced by “Hey, watch this!” Those tricks earned me broken arms, creaky knees, ankles that crackle when I walk…and lets not even talk about my toes. 12 years of ballet, including several years as a performer en pointe can really mess with your feet. I’ve still got lovely arches though.
But also, the riding…sometimes you just end up dirty. Today was one of those rides. I didn’t feel like we’d done too much hard work, but I was just plain filthy by the time we were done. Scuffs and smears all up and down my leg, sticky hands, dirt everywhere. And this was a short weeknight ride! I do a lot to avoid getting too scarred on the rides, from extreme sun protection, bigger glasses, and I also don’t push myself to speed too quickly down the hills. Tonight’s ride was a lot of up and down though, despite being short, and that meant a lot of fast downhills.
Time: 1.5 hours
Distance: 17 miles/ 610 feet elevation gain
Average speed: 11.6 MPH
Weather: started hot, cooled off pretty quick to low 80s and breezy
Ride Rating: 4.5/5
This was a fun, short midweek ride, doing the hill at Chatfield, up to the dam and back down. Climbing is fun! But, back to the scars… I had the unfortunate reminder of how every thing that happens to our bodies is marked on us, sometimes visible, sometimes not. And in a second, something can change, and mark you forever.
When I got home from my ride tonight, I popped online to check the facebooks, and learned that one of my dearest friends was in a horrible car accident. Crossing the street from the farmer’s market to her house, she was hit by a car, and the impact knocked her out of her shoes. She was airlifted to the hospital, and is having surgery tomorrow morning at 7:30 am to have pins put into her hips and legs. She won’t be able to walk for at least three months…. and she walks dogs for a living.
Another friend, a few years ago, was bucked off a horse, and broke three different places in both her arms and was unable to use them for 2 months. She still has scars from the pin placements, and scars inside from the fear of being thrown again. She’s back on the horses, doing dressage rather than jumping, but she’s persevering. I hope my dear sweet friend that was hurt today also pulls through. If you are the praying type, it probably wouldn’t hurt to say a little blessing, prayer, light a candle for her.
With all those possible ways to get scarred….I am going to keep doing my own way of chasing injuries. I’m not afraid of some scars, scuffs, or a little dirt.