It’s mid-August. I’m on my bike, riding down on the of the local trails. It’s hot, but not too hot. Sunny, pleasant. An idea is building in my mind as the wind rushes past me. Something to do to mark my 40th year, something I can turn into an event I can share with all the people I love and all the people who love me. A cross-state bike ride, designing a game on the way, live streaming it for anyone who cares to watch.
Over the next weeks, I let the idea find its natural boundaries, set things down firmly, and get the plans in motion. Route, gear, rig, game, Kickstarter, boom. It’s all good to go.
Now, I’m a week out and I’m so, so nervous. I’ve got all the boxes checked. I’ve got everything I’ll need. I’m prepared for weather. I’m ready to camp, ready to stream, to have power to charge devices. Ready to film, design, and ride. And yet…
I’ve never been good with uncertainty. Something about the way I grew up made it so that I work best with firm realities, black and white, staying within the lines. As I’ve grown, I’ve worked to get better to plan, but to accept there’s so much out of my control. It’s a better place to be. Even with that growth, this ride is challenging me.
I’ve never done anything like this before. I haven’t camped since I was 13. It might rain, I could get hurt, there might be, it could, it’s possible that, uncertainties over and over. And I have to be okay with that. Not knowing what’s going to happen is the point. It’s why I keep wanting to ride further from home. I want to see new things, to learn new things. I want to embrace the uncertainty.
On this side of the trip, things are as planned as they can be. If I missed anything, I’ll just have to adapt. And that’s the way things should be. I’m on the cusp of an adventure.
Writing this out has helped me deal with the anxiety I had. Now all I want is a fast-forward button to get me to the shore of Lake Erie so I can start riding.