An EPIC Journey - THANK YOU!
Although my "hangover" didn't involve any crying, the Pilgrimage has been with me like an echo since I got home on Sunday.
Despite having done a few trips on my bike before, this one felt special because in every way that counts, it was *mine*. I knew, as soon as I saw your post about it, that I had to go. I chose it, then I dreamed about it, and I turned my mind to it every time life got a bit noisy. I made the trip to Victoria with a friend (and even that was an adventure because we were new friends who'd never traveled together), but every rich, vibrant moment of it was *my* experience of this thing I'd chosen for myself.
In groups of strangers I've often felt like an oddball -- not enough of something or too much of something else -- so I was prepared, despite my excitement, to feel not-quite-in once we all came together. But then we did come together, and every Refugio cracked us open a little more. My fellow pilgrims were warm and accepting, odd in their own beautiful ways, all different but all glued together by their (our) love of riding, all held in the embrace of this Pilgrimage of discovery. And you were the heart that gave it life.
Last weekend reminded me how easy it is to connect with other souls if I just trust, and how much love I can feel in the world if I keep my heart open.
Thank you again for holding this space.
This was my first braaap beyond borders and I look forward to many more!
Whereas previously I was afraid to ride alone and often got lost even in my own city, I rode ~500 miles on this Pilgrimage, much of it solo, and was able to navigate my way around beautiful Vancouver Island. All weekend I puttered at my own pace along peaceful roads with little traffic and no pressure to keep up with the big kids on fast bikes. I don't ride because I love the feeling of riding; I ride because it makes me love the feeling of living! I am forever grateful to my Grom, Zippy, for the freedom and fun it grants me; to my wind sisters for the friendships and the community; and to the Pilgrimage Ride for inner and rider growth.
Thanks so much for the opportunity to join!
I'm usually pretty good with words but currently find myself overwhelmed with emotion and struggling to put in writing, exactly how i feel. When I finally got my bike a year ago, i just wanted to ride to be cool and to race because that was my childhood dream.
Not for one second, did imagine that owing a bike would lead me to a community filled with infinite amounts of love and support that lead to emotional and spiritual growth. This weekend further reinforced that emotional and spiritual growth and strengthened bonds previously formed as well as new friendships.
More importantly, it restored my faith in humanity which tends to waiver because it feels like there's so much bad in the world. Sometimes i feel helpless but this weekend i had the amazing opportunity to give to those in need while enjoying myself and learning about myself.
It took me a long time to love myself. Being surrounded by these incredible women you brought together further solidified my self confidence, self esteem and self acceptance.
I know things like this aren't easy to organize and have a kazillion moving parts but you should be proud. Your soul radiates love, caring and kindness. Regardless of whether you realize it or not, you've changed a lot of lives directly and indirectly for the better this weekend and I'd like to thank you for that.
Don't stop being you. Thank you for all you've done. From the bottom of my heart, i truly appreciate it. Orene