Do you trust me?
Originally posted 8/16/17
I have a new hobby. And that is sitting on the back of my boyfriend’s bike and getting to quietly self-reflect on myself. Now, one would not normally think of riding at 60 miles an hour with the wind whipping around you as a nice meditative moment, but since I can’t listen to music and there isn’t anyone I can talk to, it has become my go to.
I am not complaining, by any means, I LOVE IT! The wind around me, feeling the air change as we go, being able to see everything so closely, and of course, hugging the super hot guy in front of me is nice too. But it took me a bit to get there, and not just for the obvious that there is NOTHING, I mean NOTHING, between me and the next car or pavement. And that means I have to trust that man in front of me with my life.
Well, DUH!!! Why would you get on the back of a bike with someone you didn’t trust? This is an obvious thing, right?! Yes, yes it is. And I trusted him with this the very first time I got on the back of his bike that he would do his best not to get me killed. But what I realized the other night is I am trusting in a whole other way. I am experiencing a relaxed, comfortable attitude riding with him that I am not 100% sure I could experience with anyone else.
To start with, I have trust issues. And for those that aren’t going, “Ya, we know” you have to understand I have huge trust issues. In relationships, at jobs, even in riding in other peoples’ vehicles. Have you ever seen me ride with someone else? I am constantly looking both ways too, looking that it is clear when we merge into traffic, even trying to look at the speed the driver is going. I have to be aware of what is going on constantly, not because I can change it, but so that I can brace myself for when the worst happens. Bon Jovi has a song called, “Never say die” and one of the lyrics I have always loved was “Love is just another word for trust.” What does that mean to someone who has never learned to trust though? When trusting someone is just a constant bell scale with the top the person being someone who screwed you over the least.
And so I don’t trust. I expect at any given time the worst will always happen. My life is just me always tense, expecting an impact or bracing myself to leap away if needed. I am never safe, emotionally or physically, I have to have a constant radar on what could happen so it doesn’t take me by surprise. I’m Picard commanding the Enterprise in Nemesis, telling all hands to constantly be bracing for impact.
But on the back of a bike, you can’t do that or you risk throwing the driver off course. I can’t look back constantly for traffic when he merges onto the highway, or look over his shoulder to see how close the next vehicle is. There is obviously room for me to move and look around, but when your driver is half a foot taller than you, there is not much in front of you that will you be able to see without really trying to stand up. So I had to sit back and relax, and trust.
And that’s what I am learning to do, and I honestly don’t know if I could do this with anyone else. The first couple rides I did spend the entire time tense, trying to guess when he will stop, turn, or go and try to anticipate it so I could brace myself appropriately. But over the last few weeks, I have changed, and who knows if the two are related to each other, but I know that I CAN trust him, both on and off the bike. And because of that trust, I now find myself fully relaxed on the bike, no longer trying to anticipate what is going to happen, but truly enjoying the ride, living in the moment.
So why a blog post about learning to trust my boyfriend on a bike? Because I think it represents something bigger, and not that couples with trust issues should go out and buy a bike, I do think it does say something on a grander scale. I honestly can’t tell you which one is helping more, but I know me getting on that bike the first time was me relinquishing some of my control and trust issues, and the end result was positive, which I think helped with my mental health off of the bike as well. But then again, I am not sure if I would have gotten on the bike in the beginning with him if a small bridge of trust hadn’t already been established between him and me. I had to already trust him for that first ride.
I won’t lie, I am still slightly tensed for impact. I don’t think you erase 34 years of being on edge in 2 months, but I feel hopeful for the first time. My therapist had recommended learning to make a human connection in order to get over some of my childhood trauma, but I never thought I would be able to. I am happy to say that I think I was wrong, and I am very happy to see the changes it is bringing into my life. Both on and off a bike.