Resisting Hasty Decisions

There are times when it is appropriate to notice your gut instincts, to react upon them, and there are times when it is important to check those emotions at the door and step forward. My gut reaction to this whole mess I have found myself in is to withdraw, to back away and reconsider. The stoic side of me is saying to step up to the plate and keep swinging.

It isn’t uncommon to hit an emotional wall while on a long tour. The time it occurs is different for everyone, and very circumstantial, but it will happen. My wall has arisen as a result of some bad luck and bad weather, coupled with a new realization of the isolation and loneliness of the touring life. Withdrawing from this struggle would, first and foremost, make me feel guilty to myself. I dreamed up this adventure aware of the multitude of known and unknown struggles I would have to face; forfeiting to those struggles makes me feel weak. I have support coming from all directions as I weigh my decision, but ultimately I am recognizing the power of my own mind. As soon as I noticed a weather window for the next few days, my reaction was to burn the rubber and see if I could get to California. Northern California has every reason to be the same as the Northwest, but it also has every reason to tease the weather patterns off the southern half of its state.

After thinking it over for some time it is very apparent to me that if there is any hesitancy in making a decision, then the prudent choice should be to keep on moving. Even if I suffer for two more weeks I will find myself in San Francisco, the gateway to dreamier climes. An invitation has been extended my way to let me visit family for the holidays, which I will accept as an opportunity to think and talk things through. I never wanted to step foot on a plane while on this self-powered journey, but I also am now more open to the changing dynamics of this trip and the additional means that may ultimately lead to its success. I guess I would have to say that being a staunch purist at anything has its consequences, but being flexible and open allows greater room for success.

As a result, I am recognizing the need to stay flexible in my approach to this project. It was envisioned as a way to see the world in a new and unique way, exposing me to people and places I wouldn’t otherwise see, and to inspire and enhance my artistic self. When I researched the possibilities, the route down the length of the Americas jumped out at me. My first 10 hard days down the road in Alaska was possible because of the vision of riding the 10 hard miles into the wind in Patagonia on the other end of my trip. If this trip undergoes changes, I am trying to remember that it was originally about enhancing my artistic self. I currently feel very uninspired, and ultimately that is what I am grappling with fixing. What paths this trip takes to get me there is yet unknown, but I wouldn’t be on it if I already knew the way.

Wish me safe passage as I plod to California!

2 Responses to “Resisting Hasty Decisions”

  1. Patrick says:

    Good decision to stick with it man. One crank of the pedals at a time, you’ll get there.

  2. Martha says:

    Safe passage, Justin. Your thoughtful and measured approach to the trip itself and to your dreams and needs will hold you in good stead while you cycle south. Whatever decision you make, you’ve impressed me immensely.

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