It’s been a crazy year, for most of us really.
No matter how busy you are, or how much spare time you may have due to COVID-19, it is just a very strange time.
For me, work has been busier than ever before and the growing pains that come with that are significant. Having my kids out of school has taxed our free time even more, and being that guy who just won’t quit or even slow down, I’ve been putting work first, family a close second, and everything else … way down the list.
Normally throughout the spring and summer, I ride a lot. Things still get busy, but I manage to ride early in the morning, squeeze in an extra commute in the trails, or get out for a late road ride once my kids are asleep. Four to six days a week on the bike are standard.
This year, with so much going on, it seems every time I plan a ride there is another fire to put out. And being a shop owner and a Dad, no one can fill my shoes, right? I skip fun, I skip sleep, and I skip what used to feel like a life in the interest of keeping it all moving forward.
My buddy Steve often tells me to slow down. He says I need to lower people’s expectations of me, as well as my own. In the past I have ignored much of Steve’s advice, only to find out later that Steve is pretty smart.
I ignored Steve’s advice in the spring. I ignored the same advice earlier in the summer, but last week I kind of hit the wall and decided to take a bit of time off. I rode my bike, I went swimming with my kids, I even had a relaxing evening with the beautiful Chenoa (well, we talked about reno’s and work, but at least we were enjoying an ocean view and had no screaming kids with us).
After a few days of being away from work, I realized that the Swicked team wasn’t calling every five minutes with problems. All the unpacking at our new house is still piled high in the garage, but I found my toothbrush and my biking clothes, so I’m good to go. And instead of going on instinct and working an extra 20 hours last week, I took a bit of time and rode with an old friend who I never see enough.
As I returned to work at full speed this week It seems nothing is amiss, nothing fell through the cracks, and clearly, I am not as important as I thought.
It’s kind of a relief.
It’s not like I can flick a switch and change who I am, but this might be a good start … I hope.
I’m James Durand and I’m Goin’ Ridin’…