sliding downhill

I’ve noticed that my happy/ energetic stages seem to be verging on the hypomanic, and my apathetic/ bored stages almost seem to tip toward a very mild depression. I’ve been tracking my moods again to make sure. I don’t think it’s bipolar … I think it’s just the time of year. Mom’s birthday and deathiversary and whatnot. Also, my circadian rhythms seem to be all out of whack.

I’m a natural night owl, so I stay up late, but I also tend to wake up every morning at 7:30 or 8:00 a.m. If I’m lucky, I get a mid-morning nap in. Otherwise, I’m usually draggin’ and kind of antisocial feeling until mid-afternoon, and then I’m usually vibrating with energy and wanting to go do something — a walk, a motorcycle ride, a visit with friends, whatever. But with the summer heat and John’s post-shift exhaustion and Kidling’s friends coming over, I usually just end up staying inside and playing video games despite feeling tense and irritable due to the unspent high energy levels.

We did go on a long motorcycle ride as a family the other day. People maybe don’t realize this, but riding a motorcycle in 88*F is actually super uncomfortable. There’s totally this assumption that motorcycles are great to ride on a summer’s day, and they are … but it is also meltingly hot. We were dripping with sweat. Kidling was whiny and frustrated, but I didn’t let it bother me. See, I had a surprise planned.

We rode out on this lovely, tree-lined and wood-shaded road that curved and twisted through sun and shadow until we arrived at an out-of-the-way creek. John likes to look for agates there, and Kidling and I love wading and splashing in the icy current. We’ve gone out there twice this summer with the dogs, but both times it was packed with people and their pets.

This time it was empty. Gloriously isolated and empty, and it was just the three of us. Over th last winter, the path of the stream had shifted, and now there was a deep water hole to jump into. Kidling and I splashed right in, gasping and shrieking at the unexpected iciness of the swift current after the long, hot ride. Within short order, we were soaked through from top to bottom — dripping jeans, shirts, and hair.

John shook his head in quiet disbelief at his insane wife and child, neatly rolled up the hem of his jeans, and waded in ankle-deep water looking for agates.

After an hour or so, Kidling and I were chilled to the bone and shivering. We finally convinced John to come into the deeper water, and the three of us goofed off a bit with splashing and dunking. We took a couple pictures for a family album I’m putting together, and then we got back on the motorcycles and headed home.

The combined wind of the ride and warmth of the afternoon sun soon dried our sopped clothing to a clingy dampness — the perfect air-conditioning solution for a motorcycle ride. Kidling enjoyed the second half of the ride much more than the first, and begged to know when we could repeat the experience. It was great.

Soon enough, he’ll be in school again. I’m looking forward to it. He starts 7th grade next Wednesday. His fall soccer practice started tonight, and he’ll be turning in athletic forms at the school, too. He’s also taking his first robotics course — the subject he plans to major in, eventually. With the demands that his academics and extracurricular activities will place on him, I should have plenty of time for creative writing and/ or studying for my LSATs. Just a few more days.

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One thought on “sliding downhill

  1. Wow… what a fun ride and experience. I received your note postal mail. Thanks. As for heat and riding… When we ride during these hot days we ride up into the mountains to higher elevations. It’s in the 70’s up there. I’m not a fan of the heat. There’s a wet vest that is used by some riders to stay cool. I need one. I thought I was going to die last Summer. On one ride… we had to stop a couple of times and pour a bottle of water over me. It was so hot that the heat sucked the moisture out in a very short time. I try not to ride in that kind of heat now. It totally makes me sick.

    Kidling sounds like he is going to quite busy this school year. Like you said… good for you to have your time.

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