Monday, August 3, 2020

Getting a Grip on Life Challenges - Establishing a Fluid Routine

This time is weird for everyone and I feel especially lucky.

After a major family move that had been in the works since last autumn, we transitioned a month ago - indeed our new house construction was only 6 weeks behind schedule due to Vermont's entire industry shutting down for a period. A strong seller's real estate market bounced back after a minor hiccup so our other home worries will soon be a memory.

Like many others, I've been out of work for months without any indication I will be returning anytime soon. My husband, whose goal was to retire this past June, has continued working, so I'm thankful and sad because it may be sometime before I'm employed again and carry our family benefits. Fortunately, I'm also preoccupied with new and old house tasks, have sewn numerous pillow and cushion covers, altered shower curtains, and continually help my mother's household. Our governor has handled this pandemic with aplomb, conducting 3 per week press conferences to keep the public informed - all with a calm presence. I'm very thankful we live in a small state with wonderful leadership.

Our adult children continue to live with us: a recent high school graduate and a senior at a local college. The eldest son has found online part-time work while assured he will have a mix of online/in-person classes next semester. The other son is recovering from a broken wrist,  wasn't planning on higher education, so he's trying to figure out what comes next. We had to postpone a trip to Colorado where he planned on attending bike mechanic school. At least he's able to connect with friends and get outside.

Living one day at a time has not come easy. I've learned to also care for my mental health - an important topic in the news recently - by going on almost daily bike rides. Some rides encompass errands; some include bringing a picnic lunch. I ride with my husband occasionally, and have also taken up swimming in the lake again. 

Cycling for me, like for many of my readers, is an emotional outlet. Time to reflect and sort through difficult decisions. I believe the simple yet powerful motion of turning one pedal at a time will pull me through this difficult time.


  1. Cycling on a majority of days throughout this pandemic has certainly contributed to maintaining my sanity, as I believe it has for many. In addition, with a little extra time on my hands, I found an ideal candidate for restoration: a 1987 steel-framed bike with a good pedigree in a size perfect for my wife. The work was therapeutic and successful, so now she can experience its ride, handling and geometry, and perhaps better understand why I've had no interest in replacing my steel road bike in the 3 decades I've owned it.

    She asked if I knew the weight of her 'new' ride. I hadn't given that any thought, but weighed the 33-year old bike to satisfy her weighed exactly the same (to within 1/10 of a lb) as her 3-year old alloy and carbon road bike. Full disclosure: the 33-year old bike has the advantage of lighter pedals and saddle, so could be up to a pound heavier if they were similarly equipped. When she tells me how the rhythm of pedaling, the feeling of wind on her face, or the sensation of banking through a smooth curve on a greenway bring a sense of equilibrium to her world, I just nod my head. And she understands that I understand.

  2. I have found that regular daily exercise has been very helpful and I have mixed walking and cycling as far as possible. I have badly missed making music and singing though.

  3. I hope there's no Kraken in that lake where you swim!


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