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AIDS Life Cycle Ride: Another Path of Learning in Addiction Recovery
I participated in the AIDS Life Cycle Ride last week and I must say it was an incredible experience. There were 2200 bicycle riders traveling 7 days for a total of 545 miles. It’s a great group of people and it was awesome to experience something so insular at this time in my life. I don’t believe I would have ever done something like this if I hadn’t gotten sober. I’d never have found the time to drink and train.
One of the many highlights of each day, although I wasn’t able to attend each, was an AA Meeting at 6:30. There were not a lot of people in the meetings I did attend, but it was great to see that meetings are sort of mainstream in a way. They are almost expected to be there. I find that a lot in my world, and it could be because I am so comfortable in my recovery after so many years. I don’t care if people know I am in recovery. If there is an issue it’s there’s and not mine. Of course that’s not to say I break anonymity regarding other people’s addiction recovery.
Although the days were long, sometimes 11 hours, it was great to have these meetings, as the challenge is hard and I would get through the day being Hungry, Angry, Lonely and Tired. Yes, this cropped up a few times for me, as cycling can be a very lonely sport, but the meetings helped me learn something about myself. Although having an ego that takes hold is not necessarily something new, it is however surprising to this day how I don’t see it coming. I forget, at times, I am human, I have limitations. I sometimes think I can do anything, which I can, but in this case I need to recharge. Here’s what I mean.
I didn’t get much sleep as it is quite the change going from a warm comfy bed to a sleeping bag with an air mattress. Yes, I can sleep on the ground, but it was mostly the noise; snoring, whispering, giggling, and people having fun. How dare they have fun? Right? We are here for a cause, get to bed! Anyway, sleep was interrupted and exhaustion set in. Anyone who experiences this can understand that after a few days you tend to get a little cranky, maybe even short-tempered. I tried to tough it out, hold it in, and just push on, but by the third day, I was exhausted, So, I separated from the group I was with. I needed some AA time as well as moments of reflection time. I took them selfishly!
I ‘righted’ my head and was able to get into the groove of the ride, and as I said before it was a really a great time. Am I glad it is over? Yes. Will I do it again? No. Sometimes life is about the experiences. I wanted to know what it was all about. So, I did it. Will I get involved in the ALC Ride again in some other way? Yes. Maybe as a volunteer…but we will see.
Thanks for reading.
Recovery Rob BIO
Recovery Rob is a 47-year-old man who has more than nineteen years of sobriety, whose drugs of choice at one time were alcohol and drugs, and he has worked in and around the field of addiction for more than 20 years. Having just recently launched his own website, Ask Recovery Rob, he hopes to reach out and continue to help others who work through their process of addiction and recovery. Recovery Rob is a professional writer who has published two novels and is currently working on his third. He has been writing and working as Pat Moore Foundation’s premiere blogger and content writer, which helps keeps Pat Moore Foundation’s addiction and recovery blog top-rated.