Learning to Ride: A Riff


I’m pretty proud of myself, so please excuse me while I go ahead and share my adventure from this weekend: I took my first ride on the back of my husband’s motorcycle!

Now, I’ve ridden a motorcycle before. I even have a motorcycle license, though I don’t actively ride. But this was the first time I’ve ridden on the back of someone else’s motorcycle, and it probably says something about the kind of person I am that I found being a passenger to be infinitely more terrifying. Initially, all I could think as we sped around an empty lot, testing tolerances, was: Ohmygoodness I’m going to die! So little control! Zip and zoom and sudden stop, and all I could do was hold on for dear life!

This is not unlike diabetes, I thought to myself; completely insane and sometimes so frightfully out of my hands.

“Are you ready to go on the road?” he asked.

“Are you kidding me? This is terrifying!”

“Really? Is it that bad? Do you not want to go?”

“No, I want to go– but just know– this is absolutely terrifying!”

As we entered the road, I steeled myself up with the thought that, well, at least this way, if something happens, we’ll almost both certainly die, which is better than one of us dying, or both of us being maimed. (Dear Mom: please excuse the morbidity. I say these things with a sense of humor.)

Off we went! And we really went. Almost a hundred-miles-an-hour went.

And it was awesome. So fast! And so little control! Exhilarating.

I couldn’t help but think of Amy’s recent post, Learning to Ride, in which she notes the sense of confidence and strength that comes with mastering a bicycle. I had a similar sense as I felt the wind and the turns and the speed– yeah, I’m a diabetic, yeah I measured my blood sugar before and after and I worried about what would happen if I got low during the ride, but– did you see how fast we went? Did you see how well I held on? Look at me go! This is fun!

And, my mental soundtrack during this trip? Surprisingly appropriate for the daily diabetic as well:

“How do I master
The perfect day
Six glasses of water
Seven phonecalls

if you leave it alone
it might just happen

It’s not up to you
Well, it never really was…”

Take it away, Bjork:


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Scott K. Johnson
11 years ago

You are braver than me my friend!

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