I use it as my friend.
I use it to escape my failures.
It is the only time I feel like myself. It is the only time I feel like I am home.
With all my failures as a human - the regrets, the poor decisions; my love lost. With regretfully failed relationships... with her abandoning us - BMX is sometimes my only friend. The scarring deaths I've been a part of. The depression. Thoughts of suicide and more regret. And missing her. And hating her. And loving her. And despising her.
Yes. I have friends. I love them... they seem to want to help me. They invite me to BBQ's, events, going out, hanging out, mountain bike rides, road bike rides; over-for-dinner-and-hang-out. They mean well... they want to bring me in close. They send me very sweet messages and e-mails and texts. They reach out, and it's what people do. But, in my choice of seclusion, my naturally reclusive behavior that stems back to when I was a child - I look to BMX - sometimes my only friend.
I think they don't get me.
They don't know that I am truly a recluse. They see me typically as an outgoing person - I have a strange sense of humor that comes from pain and not happiness. I make people laugh, but that is mistaken for an outgoing person. They read into that - that it is company I desire. When in fact, I just want my friend - that BMX bike and that ride. That session. That grind. That fully rotated 360. That hang-5. With nothing but a 20" bike with four pegs, my music in one ear, my low brow cap, my pads, and my dark sunglasses covering my face. That is my mask - I don't want them to see me.
With BMX, I get to be the man I would like to see myself as. BMX is a fully tailored choose-my-own-adventure by simply stepping out the front door. And no matter what page I turn to - I win. That's what BMX does. That's why it sometimes is my only friend. It allows me to be the hero of my own story - when most of my story is a sad failure. Even with the crashes - there is triumph in the attempt.
I cheer myself on... tell myself to keep going. That didn't hurt - it's only a bruise or a scrape. That didn't hurt - you are that much closer to pulling it. That didn't hurt.
With a life full of failures... with watching the man I keep pulling for... but rather he remains broken and scarred - I give him BMX. Because BMX is that rare opportunity he becomes the true hero - even if it's for a brief, triumphant moment. I love that man on the BMX bike. That's me, right there.
The rest of him, I hate.