#AtoZChallenge: ‘B’ is for Bike

Today’s “Blast to the Past” post for the A to Z Challenge is a repost from October, Lance Armstrong, I’m Not.

Getting older ain’t easy. I’ll be 34 in exactly two months, which will plant me firmly in my mid thirties. I’m not much of a fan of the getting older thing, so I’d probably feel iffy about this if not for the fact that a) I get to go on a cruise with only my husband a week later and b) my husband will turn 40 a month after my birthday. Taking pleasure in the misery of others is always helpful.

A few years ago, shortly after turning 29, I started going through my third-life crisis.

I’m not sure why I thought turning a year older would make things vastly different, considering that my idea of fun was staying at home on the weekends, hanging out with my family, and playing video games or watching Netflix. Who was I kidding? I may not have been old in years, but I was definitely old in spirit. These were things my husband pointed out, but why let things like reason and logic get in the way of a good crisis, amirite?

So, I decided to live it up that year, have fun, and party like it was 1999 (even though I only 15 then and didn’t do anything that remotely resembled partying in 1999). In case you’re thinking that “party like it was 1999” meant going to clubs (something I’ve also never done, because of being a senior citizen in spirit) and other wild things, what it really meant was that we invited a few friends over once or twice a month when Little Man was spending the night at his grandparents. We would have a few mixed drinks while playing board games or watching football games. That’s a good way to live it up, right?

Another thing I planned to do during that little crisis period was get healthier. Because lamely partying like it’s 1999 and getting healthy go hand in hand.

I made a few changes. I started tracking my calories. I used sugar-free mixers. And I bought a bike. I hadn’t ridden a bike since I was 13, but I decided that I was going to ride around my neighborhood, get some exercise, lose some weight, and eventually become one of those people who wear tight shorts and annoys the piss out of drivers by riding in the middle of the road.

“That’s a horrible idea,” my husband told me after I informed him of my plans. “Can’t you just ride your exercise bike so you won’t get hurt?” (I have a reputation for being clumsy as hell and have the history of broken bones, scars, and sprains to prove it.)

“No! I want to be out on the open road!”

After much discussion, I got my way, which I expected; I’ve only not gotten my way two times with my husband, and that’s when I wanted to buy a crossbow and buy a foosball coffee table. (For the record, I got my way on the second one a few years later.) He wasn’t happy about it, but we made the bike purchase anyway, with the condition that I wear a helmet, which I thought was lame given my age. (Yet another reason I’m an idiot.)

This is what I bought:

(Okay, that picture doesn’t really do it justice. Here is a picture of what the one I bought looked like, if you want to see the real deal. If you’re thinking that this isn’t the type of bike one would be riding on the open road and possibly on bike trails in the mountains, then you would be right.)

My first attempt on the bike didn’t go so well. More than 15 years and bunches of pounds later didn’t help matters much, so I wobbled down the end of our short road and came back. I was done for the day.

“I think we should just take that thing back,” my husband told me. “This is not going to end well.”

Ha. What did he know?

As it turns out, a lot.

The next day was Saturday, and we were having a small get-together. We had several friends over, got super wild and played Lord of the Rings Trivial Pursuit, and had a few drinks. (Those of us feeling rather depressed over getting old might have had more than a few.) Around 2 AM, I was feeling a bit crowded since people still hadn’t left, so I went outside to sit on the porch for a bit to get some space. As I was sitting there, I spied my bike at the end of the porch, in all of its beautiful teal and white glory.

Ride me, it beckoned.

It was like I was Frodo and it was the One Ring — I was drawn to it. The next thing I knew, I was riding down my driveway and down my road (which I must add is partially a gravel circle with not a lot of houses and next to no traffic, so you don’t think I was a complete idiot). My plan was to ride to the corner and come back.

I was doing great. If only my husband could see me now! Nary a wobble in sight.


And then, right as I was about to turn into our driveway and make my triumphant return, I lost my balance. I put my foot out to steady myself, except for my foot landed on some loose gravel, causing my ankle to turn in, and I heard a “snap.”

That hurt. A lot. And there was no one around to help me up. I sat there at the edge of the driveway for a few minutes and finally forced myself up and hobbled up the driveway and inside the house.

My husband gave me one look when I came in and knew exactly what had happened.

“You didn’t.”

“I did.”

“And you didn’t even wear your helmet,” he said, which he knew because it was sitting on the end table.

The next morning, my ankle was swollen to the size of a softball, so we went to the orthopedic urgent care where the doctor told me that I likely had grade 3 ankle sprain and would need to wear a walking boot and then do physical therapy. That was a fun way to spend part of my third-life crisis.

I learned a valuable lesson that night — don’t exercise, which was a lesson I should’ve learned the time I tried to use an exercise ball.

Thanks for joining me for the April A to Z Challenge! If you’re participating, please leave a link in the comments section so I can check out your post.

Want to connect on social media? You can find me on FacebookTwitter, and Bloglovin.

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Author: Erika

I’m a SAHM to two kids. When I’m not doing all the typical mom things (diapers, soccer, etc.), I like writing, reading, and playing games. Clearly I live the life of a rock star.

35 thoughts on “#AtoZChallenge: ‘B’ is for Bike”

  1. Haha, I love this story! I shouldn’t laugh but I bought the bike too, I haven’t fallen yet but it is just a matter of time. I also remember my mother and my aunt years ago taking my cousin’s and my own biking and taking off. We chased them, worried they would fall. They got a head of us and rounded a corner. When we ran around the corner the pair of them were laying in the ditch laughing hysterically! They walked home and we walked beside them pushing out bikes. Great post, thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I remember this post. It is just as funny now…sorry. Mine was roller skates, not blades (I knew I couldn’t balance myself on one thin line of wheels). Got me a brand new pair of skates and went to the roller skating rink a few times with my daughter. No problems. Then I tried skating around the block…uneven sidewalks and people on skates do not go together. Fell flat on my butt in plain view of everyone on the busy street. Hurt my hands and shoulders because I tried to break my fall. Being a typist, hurting your hands is not a good idea. I think the skates are still on the bottom of my closet with my stiletto heels 🙂 Nice B!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ouch! Definitely not a good idea. I was pretty good on my roller blades, but I could *never* walk in heels. Still can’t. In fact, a post coming up soon will be related to that.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hah! I tend to cycle on the recumbents 😉 Now, when I lived on post, I rode more often, but that’s because tons of paths and sidewalks everywhere, can pedal faster than gators run, plenty of people outside in case I fell — but in the city, no, not so much. Moo’s the only one who still has a bike and she rides only on our street, because to leave our street is to die in traffic. *nods*

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Aaah, you made me laugh. I have never been able to ride a bike as my blood sugar would drop before I got to the end of the road and I have no sense of balance (my daughter was the only child to FAIL her cycling proficiency at her school…). But then my friend’s son started selling electric bikes and I could ride one! All of a sudden! I felt so free… (I’m not allowed to drive, either, in case I fall unconscious and kill someone). Those diet drinks make you put ON weight you know – the body is fooled into thinking sweetness is coming ad makes insulin which lays down fat and you feel hungry and eat… you learn these things in my position! (Not the floor, very often!) Will be back. Liz http://www.poetryroundabout.com

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I loved riding a bike when I was a kid. Then when my husband and I got married, he got me a bike because we lived at the beach, and I found it isn’t just like, well, riding a bike. It was HARD. I fell over a lot. But I soldiered on and rode often. Then we moved inland, in the hills, and riding a bike was absolutely no fun and that’s the end of me riding a bike. and I’m not one bit sorry. p.s. I fall off the elliptical at the gym, too, so maybe it’s not just bikes?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hello, fellow A-to-Zer! I loved this, and related to it, quite vividly. In fact, I, too, bought a bike recently. I thought, “heck, I used to ride bikes all the time, and it is like proverbial that you never forget.” It may be proverbial, but I totally had forgotten. I tried to ride it, failed, hurt myself, and consigned the bike to our garage, where it now resides in scowling isolation.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Yeah, you know that old saying … it’s like riding a bike, you never forget. Um, yes you do! The last time I rode a bicycle I was probably in my teens. Then, as a full-time RVer, we thought it would be great to have bicycles for the campgrounds. No problem…right? Wrong! Your 65 year old body doesn’t have a clue. It didn’t matter that I rode a motorcycle. Oh, no. That was so different. Bah on bicycles!!

    Donna B McNicol, author & traveler
    Romance & Mystery…writing my life
    A-Z Flash Fiction Tales: http://dbmcnicol.blogspot.com
    A-Z of Goldendoodles: http://ourprimeyears.blogspot.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol! That saying couldn’t be less true it seems. The only thing that really applied to for me is throwing a baseball. I haven’t played in a while since my son lost interest, but went out last week to play and that whole motion is still as natural as it ever was.

      Like

  8. Oh my! So sorry it went so badly but love the story now that you are past this. You seriously are bringing so many stories from my life to mind with your A to Z posts. My husband has done some crazy stuff and almost killed himself a few times before we met (we met at 16), but since then he’s had two major accidents – one where he messed up his knee to the point he’s had 2 knee surgeries so far and probably at least one more in his future and another where he broke both bones in his forearm and has metal plates now. Guess what he was doing both times?! Riding a bicycle – on a pathway! Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. He did not want to but my daughter freaks out now every time he gets on one. He is an auto mechanic who works on motorcycles and when I mentioned his accident and showed x-rays everyone asks if his Harley is okay. They all assume it was the motorcycle, not a pedal bike!

        Liked by 1 person

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