Hope & Healing Through Photography and Poetic Expression

Freewheeling ~ narrative

In the spirit of determination, courage and fun, I pulled out my beloved bicycle this week for a short spin around the block.  It’s been  years since I’ve been able to ride.  I cannot say it was an easy feat, but I thoroughly enjoyed  the exhilaration, movement,  freedom… and  the cool bay breeze blowing through my hair.  Biking has always been magical to me, and had been one of my favorite physical outlets since I was small. Something special about speeding around on 2 big silver wheels!

Even though I am still struggling with instability of my hip joint (which refuses to stay in its proper place within the socket), and constant severe pain, I can say my muscles are most  definitely stronger for having done the 6 week rehab program in Chicago, and I continue to do my homework several hours per day.  There is yet more to overcome, but  I am still hoping to coax my body into a”happy state” somehow, someway… and am  excitedly planning to incorporate some careful and mindful biking into my healing journey as we approach the warmer weather.  To all my wonderful friends here, I encourage you to  go out and discover what makes your heart soar – and  then indulge.  Live joyfully, love  and find light everywhere you can!

Much Love To All,
Robyn Lee

feature post: Freewheeling

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67 responses

  1. ❤ inspiring. Thanks, Robyn, for being a perfect, genuine, you.

    April 12, 2013 at 1:40 AM

    • So loving – thank you S&C! Love and Gratitude ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 11:06 AM

  2. Love how optimistic you are spreading joy in the midst of personal pain. Love you to beautiful human. Sheri

    April 12, 2013 at 1:47 AM

    • Thank you so much dearest Sheri! I do try to do my best, usually that works 🙂 ~ So much love to you my sweet friend, x RL

      April 12, 2013 at 11:09 AM

  3. Two wheels of big soaring. Let your heart roam.
    Robyn, you inspire me yet again.
    I’m now in my happy state, waiting for tomorrow to come.
    As always to you friend, much love and many hugs!

    April 12, 2013 at 1:47 AM

    • Oh Lady Lovely – thank you for this. Yes ~ those wheels do represent so much, don’t they? So thrilled you found joy here ~ may your tomorrow be filled with Love and Joy ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 11:11 AM

  4. FANTASTIC!

    April 12, 2013 at 2:12 AM

    • Thank you wonderful friend ~ x RL

      April 12, 2013 at 11:11 AM

  5. I really admire you courage and determination . so inspiring hope the hip goes from strength to strength and the biking too…

    April 12, 2013 at 3:37 AM

    • I so appreciate that dear Valerie! One day at a time — always finding new avenues to explore. So much love to you — Blessings too! ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 11:12 AM

  6. I admire your determination. I miss cycling. Between mountain biking and road cycling I used to ride about 150 miles per week. To and from work, to and from spinning class, racing mountain bikes. I loved it. Then life got in the way, the bikes were sold, though recently inline skates have taken their place.

    Keep on pedaling!

    April 12, 2013 at 6:29 AM

    • Wow Jeff -I am so impressed; you were an avid biker!! Always something you can go back to 🙂 I loved Rollerblading too – -but think my family members might lock me up if I dared! There is a similar sense of freedom in that though ~ totally fun! Thank you and En- JOY! much love ~ RL

      April 12, 2013 at 11:16 AM

  7. eremophila

    Oh yes, it’s a fabulous feeling! Very thrilled that you’re able to partake again, albeit with a great deal of care. 🙂

    April 12, 2013 at 6:49 AM

    • Thank you eremophila ~ yes, it’s got to be with utmost care. I don’t think it’s flaring me for now … and not certain if therapeutic physically – but sooo fun – it has to be healing on many levels! Sending hugs and love ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 11:18 AM

  8. Glad you are in good spirit, and hope you keep getting better…

    Clarice

    April 12, 2013 at 8:12 AM

    • So appreciate dear Clarice ~ Sending Love and Hugs your way ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 11:19 AM

  9. victoriaaphotography

    Well done on the bike, Robyn.
    I wouldn’t even dream of getting on a bike and I admire your courage so much in doing so.
    (it’s a shame they can’t attach your hip to it’s socket in some sort of way to move like the wheel of a bike – move every which way, but not detach from it’s socket). Keep up the good work. Vicki xo

    April 12, 2013 at 8:42 AM

    • Thank you so much Victoria! I have a wonderful bike… ergonomically perfect for me — handlebars set so I can sit up straight with thorax directly over pelvis – seat height ideal – it even has a cool ‘motor-assit’ feature so if need a ‘boost’ can press a button and it’s like someone is pushing me so I can take a break from strenuous pedaling! I can’t say enough about it – but still, have not been able to bike these last few years without paiying a huge price – so maybe a little progress. I know – would be amazing if they could ‘crazy glue’ the or ‘suction cup’ this ball socket thing.. and still allow mobility… I’m working on gaining more control of the situation but ‘destination unknown’ at this point. Sending lots of love ~ x RL

      April 12, 2013 at 1:17 PM

  10. Just the uplifting message I need today. Thanks for your post.

    April 12, 2013 at 9:32 AM

    • Aww – i am so glad dear Joseph ~ you are most welcome – and have a wonderful weekend my friend! x RL

      April 12, 2013 at 1:18 PM

  11. So freeing indeed, that bicycle and the ability to soar with the wind as the wheels glide us forward! Beautiful post today Robyn. I absolutely LOVE the image above…and of course thought the self-portrait was fabulous too. Blessings to you for continued healing and strength. XX, R-

    April 12, 2013 at 9:40 AM

    • Robyn, I love your words here… it sums up so much of how I feel on the bike – like there is this momentum carrying me forward. So happy you liked the images ~ one above is also a self-portrait, spontaneous shot I took yesterday on my pitstop by the bay when I took my ride. Thank you so much for this wonderful comment dear friend ~ have a wonderful weekend!! Much Love ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 10:53 PM

  12. I too love, love, love riding bicycle, and I’m so glad you were able to hop back on yours and experience ” the exhilaration, movement, freedom… and the cool bay breeze blowing through your hair.” Good for you! I so admire your spirit of determination and courage, Robyn. And not only that, but your entire outlook on life is so wonderful and refreshing. I love your last statement there, encouraging others “to go out and discover what makes your heart soar – and then indulge. Live joyfully, love and find light everywhere you can!” You really are a true inspiration, Robyn.♥ I love the shadow shot of you on your bike and that little picture of you at the end smiling over your sunglasses is freaking adorable! Keep smiling dear Robyn, and many blessings to you…

    April 12, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    • Oh Jewels – isn’t it the best feeling?! I am especially lucky to live in a very quiet (off season) beautiful area with expansive roads and lots of nature (hardly any cars at all where I go)….. would not be the same in an urban setting for me. Yes – I feel so strongly about encouraging others to find joy in all the hidden corners of life… it’s easy to forget and take for granted – or get caught up in the stressful parts. So happy to know you enjoyed my photos too — I took the little one as well ~ goofy me with my iphone on the bike! Thought I’d better look out from under the glasses to say hi to all my amazing friends here 🙂 ~ Thank you so much for your uplifting comment. Sending you smiles and hugs – and of course tons of Love ~ x RL

      April 12, 2013 at 2:46 PM

  13. You go Robyn! Okay that’s it…. I’m starting mt Tai Chi up again today! Thanks for the inspiration! Love to you Robyn! – Resa ( Your new pic looks gorgeous!)

    April 12, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    • Yay Resa — omg – I live with a Tai Chi Master!!! He is trying hard to make me study it — has been for years! It’s pretty intense (Yang Form) — I find it fascinating to watch — like a beautiful flowing dance. Yes – you do it – and keep me posted. I know it’s soooo good for you in so many ways – So happy to give you this tiny little push through the post.. and thrilled you enjoyed! ~ thank you for kudos on new gravitar – just being silly one day with the cap! Fun for spring I thought ~ and in shot above totally goofy with the glasses– my iphone camera during bike stop at the bay! Love to you dear friend ~ xRL

      April 12, 2013 at 2:52 PM

      • Wow!
        You live with a Tai Chi Master! Please my dear friend, please give him the opportunity to teach you.
        It is gentle, yet demanding.
        I am not in your situation, but I have hurt my knees and ankles in my life and Tai Chi is the one thing I have counted on from time to time.
        Gentle, yet demanding…
        My Master taught me to think slowly …. Begin your Tai Chi ….at the moment of commencement.
        Every time I begin my Tai Chi, I will think of you.

        Dear friend, you are so incredibly beautiful! Love – Resa xo

        April 12, 2013 at 4:02 PM

      • I am so excited to tell him you practice 🙂 He knows all about you of course (re: Blue Venus) 🙂 I am a little hesitant about the many pivots of hip.. but it may be ok… I will go slow (begin at moment of commencement) and maybe start studying… always get to a certain place in the form and then loose focus for some reason…. I know it’s incredible – ancient healing art at its best! Keep me
        posted beautiful friend ~ xo love – RL

        April 12, 2013 at 4:08 PM

      • Will do! xoxo
        (I know what you mean about the pivoting..gentle but demanding… so please take a very, very slow care, and let your Master know the reality) xo – Resa

        April 12, 2013 at 4:13 PM

      • Gentle but yes, demanding!! Oh – he so knows the reality ~ 20 years by my side through all this. Thank goodness he discovered Tai Chi 15 years back. It has been a life saver in many ways… He continues to train every week too… I will have to start trying again too – slowly and mindfully! xo R

        April 12, 2013 at 4:19 PM

  14. Ha Ha! That’s wonderful! I am looking forward to getting on my bicycle but the streets are a mess right now and it is going to snow…but soon! Remember when we put clothes pegs and cards on the fenders to make that cool sound on the spokes? Ride on, Robyn!

    April 12, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    • Oh I do remember (but never did that – ha!) — Thank you dearest Jane — yes, love my bike — is set up ergonomically for all my issues – even has a motor-assist feature( if I get in trouble can push button and get a nice “boost” of power while I pedal!) ~ Soon enough your weather will shift too — was nice here this week but today a storm came in, so will just do my therapy exercise at home… Cheers to Spokes ! Love ~ Robyn

      April 12, 2013 at 2:55 PM

  15. You are an inspiration. I have a bike and have not been able to ride it because of my “issues” it but I am going to try and dust it off this spring. I would love to get one with a motor assist. Thanks for the push and wonderful posts.
    Jane

    April 12, 2013 at 6:19 PM

    • Thank you Jane; I sooo appreciate your warm words. I will go really slow with this experiment… Be real careful if you venture out. I’m only making a loop around my quiet block right now – but nearly 1 mile – flat road. I haven’t used the motor assist yet – but if I ever build up to going any distance it will certainly be a great thing. Sort of makes it feel as though someone is pushing you along (though you still need to pedal). Sending you much love and let me know if you get to ride some… x RL

      April 12, 2013 at 10:50 PM

  16. ‘Destination unknown’ – cycling and life! For all of our lives are this way aren’t they Robyn, it’s such a great line. We try to control what we can but there is much we cannot know or where our life path will lead us. This is the joy of life and sometimes the source of fears. I’m so thrilled that you have a little improvement and I hope so much that you get more as time passes, however slowly. Much love to you Robyn and have a lovely weekend xx

    April 12, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    • Thank you so much Ruth… – yes isn’t the destination always unknown -and I think we really never get to any one final destination as there always more … sometimes there is fear associated with the unknown… but also anticipation and wonder! As I was working on this post, I discovered that in art, indeed bicycles symbolize renewal, progress, promise and freedom… there is a lovely metaphor for life to be appreciated in so many ways. Yes – I will take all the little improvements I can get… actually less pain while riding then I have walking, sitting etc.. and so enjoyed the motion. Will go easy for now – and just enjoy the free feeling. Sending you much Love and Hugs, and have a wonderful weekend too! ~ xRL

      April 13, 2013 at 12:32 AM

  17. Robyn,
    I really admire your courage, considering what you’ve been going through. A bicycle isn’t the safest, most kind thing you could do to yourself, but the freedom it gives is a wonderful trade-off. I’m glad that you’re reaching beyond the confinements of your physical problems and experiencing the exhiliration of “the open road”. Lord knows, we all need to feel that a lot more these days. Please do be careful though. Hugs a-plenty.
    Paul

    April 12, 2013 at 10:44 PM

    • Thank you dearest Paul – you are too kind. I am super-duper careful on my little freedom machine – -not to worry. I only ride around my block … (no cars here in the off season) … lucky to have a bay 1/4 mile down the road (where the photo above was taken) so I can park the bike and enjoy the water and the birds while I rest and stretch. Also my bike is ideal for me with regard to posture and comfort – and even has a motor assist feature if I need a boost while pedaling! Will follow my instincts though.. so far no big flares from my few adventure rides! Yes – I agree we all need to find ways to feel the exhilaration. Sending hugs and tons of love your way ~ have a beautiful weekend! ~ xRL

      April 13, 2013 at 12:38 AM

  18. Such a wonderful post to go with yet another creative and lovely shadow image!
    hugs! SS

    April 13, 2013 at 8:00 PM

  19. Thank you so much dearest Stan! So happy to know you enjoyed ~ Hope all is going well by you my friend , and sending you heaps of love and hugs too! 🙂 x Robyn

    April 14, 2013 at 1:03 AM

  20. Dear dear Robyn,
    This photo of you says all that is in your heart. I know of what you speak but for me it is the horse… I live in a place where unless you are Armstrong, you are not riding a bike. But on horseback, you are free to wander anywhere the heart calls as long as you become warrior princess and pretend you are fearless of that ravine you’ve experienced before and lived to tell the tale.

    I have thought of you so often but haven’t been able to form much of a cohesive sentence or two. I know you are suffering thru the trials of loneliness in this walk you take and I too am enduring much the same…. an island that seems deserted and only what I KNOW left to help me along the way. All I’ve learned seems all there is now… Your input has been so very mindful and led me in other directions, I admit I have not yet been able to accomplish with this persistant pain but I never give up and pain is but an illusion that reminds us of one thing—that illusion we call our body. True we do incorporate her for awhile and must treat her with great care, something i didn’t do in my younger more thoughtless years, but now she is swaddled in as much care and feeding I can muster and I think from the inside, on the cell level, maybe she is getting a message of love? I am not sure yet but I know i can do anything… i leave you with that thought today— you can do anything.

    Maybe a small mare is in my near future that I can once again ride with the wind in my hair and the freedom to go about the earth here, the trees and fields, the stones and holes — her hooves will take the brunt not my ligaments that pull so easily and leave me incapable for weeks… stretched to the maximun without me knowing until it’s too late and the stretching is done. No one has ever been able to tell me why this is but as my hips contort, my pelvis bends in odd ways that should not be, maybe there is no true “answer” medically… I am different as are you, dear one, but look at this… we have found each other and I am but a screen away.

    All ways you are in my heart and thoughts.. xoXX

    April 14, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    • Oh Linda – how amazing it would be to ride that horse… I so hope one day you can have this joy. It would be the most free and wonderful feeling I am sure, if you can find a gentle mare that will keep you safe during your journey…. And the “warrior princess” archetype … one of my very favorites and a “go to” vision for me in my plight here…. let’s keep that one alive! The illusion you speak of – the body – yes, there is so much more than the physical body…. I have wrestled with this concept for quite some time… “it’s just a body” I tell some who ask how I’m feeling… 😦 All we can do is our best – and be thankful for the gifts … the wonderful small, but meaningful things that allow us that joy and … we have to keep looking for those… I know it’s a struggle sometimes – and there is so much frustration around trying to “be” with the pain and dysfunction. Always so grateful to meet friends on my path who really do understand ~ you are one of those…. Love and Blessings ~ Healing Prayers too ~ x RL

      April 14, 2013 at 11:28 PM

  21. No one’s heart soars as well as yours Robyn. Just stating the plain facts here my friend. I am so pleased you were able to ride this week, as you said … to feel those special life affirming emotions that go with special physical activities (especially your beloved bicycle). I am so very proud of you. Through your pain and suffer you nobly present to others the courage it takes to be prepared to continue to live life to its fullest. Thank you dearest friend for the gift of you that you share with others! a precious gift indeed! xo

    April 14, 2013 at 7:36 PM

    • Beautiful Penny… thank you so so much. Yes – the bike has been my friend this week…. I seem to be in less pain while riding – so even if I only go for a short ride, it’s a wonderful glorious break – and am having the best time. Just so grateful it is not flaring me… and perhaps will increase my fitness level even more. Still working on walking and sitting ~ but still consider this activity a gift. I’m so happy to share with you ~ and other wonderful friends here… Love and so much gratitude ~ x RL

      April 14, 2013 at 11:33 PM

      • I’m sure you’ve probably already thought about this (but just in case lol) I know during your research you learned the body (cellular level) remembers all things. When you’re riding a bike (a wonderful memory to you) your body (the body via chemicals being released) sends a pretty strong signal to various other parts of the body reinforcing “this is feel good” memory which might be improving (a little) your immune system and your bodies ability to cope (with pain) and focus more on healing? Just a thought I had when I read your words about loving to ride a bike. 🙂 xo

        April 15, 2013 at 11:33 AM

      • Yes .. you are so right Penny… I noticed this quite naturally — I so love this kind of effect — endorphins and oxytocin surely must get released. I am always on the look-out for natural ways to relieve pain, and heal – this is just one of many I’ve discovered…. The body is pretty amazing. I just wish it would hold… maybe soon — I will keep seeking the ways!! Love you ~ x rl

        April 15, 2013 at 12:26 PM

  22. Miss Robyn,

    Someone once said life is a matter of moments.

    So glad to hear about yours and that you shared your special moment.

    April 14, 2013 at 10:13 PM

    • I agree with this Mr. Jeb, dear friend! Yes – was so happy, just had to share my moment ~ hoping to have many more exciting bicycle rides (and wonderful moments 🙂 ) So much love your way ~ Miss Robyn

      April 14, 2013 at 11:34 PM

  23. Just catching up on your blog, Robyn. It’s always a source of inspiration for me. Loved these words you wrote:

    “Live joyfully, love and find light everywhere you can!”

    🙂

    April 17, 2013 at 6:26 AM

    • So appreciate that Darren. Yes – it’s so important to make the most of every moment in this life … the joy is always there if we look for it ~ so many forget to do this 🙂 ~ So happy it resonated with you too! x Love and Light ~ Robyn

      April 17, 2013 at 2:20 PM

  24. Kev

    Oh, well done Robyn!

    April 17, 2013 at 2:51 PM

    • So much thanks dearest Kev! I appreciate 🙂

      April 17, 2013 at 11:00 PM

  25. I really appreciate you positive attitude about dealing with your pain. I know how important it is. Someone very close to me struggles with similar pain issues. She too has a “don’t give up” attitude and I thank God for it every day. But it is hard.

    April 18, 2013 at 12:29 PM

    • Thank you so much Tim! Means a lot to me – especially because I know you probably truly do understand, having someone so close faced with similar challenge – yes, soooo very hard. I keep looking for survival tools. The blog has been one of those for me, though I can only post weekly these days. So much appreciate your comment, and truly enjoyed spending some time admiring your artwork today! Sending Love and Blessings ~ RL

      April 18, 2013 at 8:28 PM

      • Thank you Robyn. Hang in there, our experience has shone us we are our best advocates and to throw away useless doctors as fast as you can. They waste your valuable time. The biggest red flag is always a prescription for anti-depressants, but I’m not telling you anything new. We did finally find the right doctor. I wish it had been a few decades earlier. Now things are getting better all the time, but there is still a ways to go. 🙂

        April 18, 2013 at 9:22 PM

    • So agree with you on that Tim… I have done trials of every ad and combination the creative well-meaning pain docs could think of over the years. I never ever got relief – in fact many made insomnia and muscle symptoms worse. I’m on very little meds now… as I can’t tolerate pain meds due to a biliary condition, and other than a muscle relaxant for sleep, don’t benefit from any. So important to be our own advocates, and learn quickly which doctors are worth time, investment, and emotional energy… I have made many mistakes – and had way too many surgeries that promised to fix things… Going to work hard to see where I can go without further surgical intervention… at least for now. So glad you guys have found a good doc to support you. It’s a blessing when that occurs. Thanks again for sharing ~ much love ~ RL

      April 18, 2013 at 11:26 PM

      • I hope you find relief soon Robyn. God bless you.

        April 19, 2013 at 12:49 AM

    • Thanks so much … truly appreciate Tim!

      April 22, 2013 at 12:58 PM

  26. Keep Pedaling and Inspiring!

    April 21, 2013 at 9:32 AM

    • Thank you Pat! I have been managing quite well on the bicycle 🙂 ~ I have a motor assist if I need to use (gives me more power, but still need to keep pedaling)… really enjoying and hope to continue. Hope you had that run with your pal Hutch. Sending Love ~ Robyn

      April 22, 2013 at 12:57 PM

  27. Hi Robyn,
    I’m happy to see you with your bicycle…it’s definitely an uplifting sight…sorry I haven’t visited here for a while….other projects and concerns have been distracting me…and I was away for almost two weeks visiting friends, family and working on a project on the West Coast. So life is good and I hope to see your beautiful face soon….xomeryl

    April 23, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    • Thank you Meryl — yes, I have missed the bike so much. It feels great to ride — and seems not to flare my pain – so a blessing. Welcome home from your adventure to the West Coast… hope it was fun and fruitful! Great to have you back, and yes – we will make a date soon! ~ x R

      April 24, 2013 at 10:51 AM

  28. What a wonderful and encouraging accomplishment, Robyn! I’m so happy to hear you were able to take it for a spin, difficult as it would have been. Wishing you continued improvement and taking your bike out for more spins!
    I would be unstable on a bicycle right now, but someday I WILL be able to do it.

    April 23, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    • Thank you so much Fergi. So far the bike seems to be ok ~ I have the seat and handle bars set at perfect heights for neutral alignment of spine and hips… and seems to encourage me to activate the right muscles without straining my hip (leg does not go into full extension while pedaling). I have not even considered biking for a few years – and oddly, flare horribly from a stationary bike or recumbent. Yes — keep the faith…. and for now focus on the nature meditation and photography ~ and expect that the bike will be in your future too! Much Love ~ Rx

      April 24, 2013 at 10:56 AM

  29. Inspiring, as always. ~ Dennis

    May 24, 2013 at 2:19 PM

  30. Your, determination, courage and positivity is inspiring. Short put inspiring post. Love it

    August 8, 2013 at 6:12 AM

    • Sunil, truly honored by your words… thank you kindly! 🙂 x RL

      August 11, 2013 at 8:37 AM

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