Have you ever been a part of something for so long that you lost enthusiasm doing it?
I’m now in that place with cycling.
It’s been my baby of a project since I was 14 (I’ll be 23 in July) and was the first thing I ever gave a commitment to and what also got me to love the outdoors. While I was cycling in just one place almost the entire time and still cycle there, I’ve expanded my horizons and go a lot of places on my bike now outside of the usual routine.
But, there’s just something that’s changed. I don’t really know what. It could be spiritually or emotionally. I feel like my heart isn’t in it anymore like it once was. It was the one thing I always loved talking about when people asked because they knew it’s who I am. But, nowadays.. if someone asks about it.. I’ll be like “Yeah, I plan on riding today” or “It’s going alright”. I don’t feel like elaborating it anymore because I feel like I’ve done enough of that to last two lifetimes.
Sometimes.. I just feel worn and tired. I wake up and walk downstairs to get coffee in the morning and all I hear are my knees crackling.
I’ve also missed more time this year for cycling than I have since 2014 and have not surpassed 1,100 miles in a month yet this year. It’s very unlike me. Almost every year I would significantly pass that milestone by March and get more than 1,300 miles in a month. I feel like I can’t do it anymore.
And I even look at the neighborhoods that I’ve used as my path. They aren’t the same anymore. Up until this year, they were pretty empty most of the time. The only time I would experience anything was if I overslept on the weekend and the kids would be out at like 1 in the afternoon and I expected it. Those were good kids though. If they were playing something, they would wait for me to pass and then continue. Now, most of the week when I go out.. there’s loads of disrespectful, self-entitled kids out there who.. if I ride by them and they are playing a game get so upset they will intentionally try and make it hard for me to ride. They typically throw things at me or try to walk directly in front of me and laugh. I’ve also watched a few of them throw things at passing cars if they made them stop playing something. Some of those kids don’t even live there. It’s a mess and it’s the one thing I’ve gone to hate more than anything. Parents are nowhere to be found to stop it from happening as most times they throw them out to the streets and make them the neighborhood’s problem. There was one instance that it got so bad one night that I had to get my dad out to police it so I could finish a ride and so that kids would stop throwing things at me. One night this young boy (can’t be older than five), unscrewed the saddle post to a bicycle that wasn’t even his and threw the saddle post with seat still attached directly at my head and only missed me by inches. He stood there clapping his hands as if he was proud of himself that it almost hit me in the head. I can’t even tell a parent about it because I don’t know who his parent is. Like six adults live at his house and the times I’ve come in contact with any of them, they’ve been incredibly rude to me. The kid’s got serious issues though (there was one incident that the little dude punched an unfamiliar kid in the face and started bleeding as they were running away and the little dude just stood there laughing about it as if someone told him the funniest joke ever — great parenting).
Depression may also be another factor. People have told me that my appearance has changed in recent months. Longer, uncombed hair, an unshaven face, dead eyes that I typically hide when I’m out. I feel a lot of disconnect in my life right now even though I’m in a good place in my life (a great job, about to graduate college).
And.. you know.. I celebrated the eighth anniversary of cycling on the 18th. I typically bring out a picture from the first year and try to find it in myself to write something inspiring to people on their own weight loss journey and I just.. couldn’t find anything. I just wrote a status that acknowledged it was the anniversary and that cycling was a big part of how I got my job. I’ve lived through most of my life with depression and can often hide it pretty well.. just not recently. It comes to the point where I sometimes feel too depressed to ride. I’ve never been there until recently. I used to ride more when I was depressed to make me feel better. I can’t even do that anymore.
It’s a darker time in my life when it shouldn’t be and I don’t know how to explain it or why it’s happening.