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Dodging the Roadkill: When It’s Time To Quit

 

Dodging the Roadkill - A Biker's JourneyClarksville, TN – We all started riding for a reason.  It only stands to reason that we’ll all quit for a reason. Whether it from an accident, old age, or we just don’t want to keep doing it. 

I was involved in a discussion the other day about when it’s time to quit riding.  The discussion began with someone commenting on how much more dangerous it is to ride than it used to be.  That’s a no brainer.  The cell phone has been a deadly game changer. 

The guys who were a part of this discussion were riders and former riders.  The ones who had quit had different reasons for stopping.  One, had just had a baby and felt it was time for him to stop the “risky business” of motorcycles.  The other had been in an accident and just couldn’t get back on it anymore. 

Biker sitting on the side of the road.

Biker sitting on the side of the road.

If you’ve been following my journey, you know that it helped me beat depression.  I knew the risks, and like many things in life, I just overcame the fear and now I ride.  My family was totally split on my decision but they know how much I love it, so here we are. 

Fear is a captivating emotion.  We all experience it, and if you can overcome it, then your life changes.  It doesn’t mean you have to be stupid, or take ridiculous risks in your life, but if you can get past those fears, then you gain confidence and strength, and to be honest, there’s a risk in most everything we do. 

I remember the first time I turned on the microphone to begin my radio career.  I was paralyzed and couldn’t speak.  I was PETRIFIED! But I overcame that fear and went on to spend my career in broadcasting. 

I’ve had two motorcycle accidents.  Nothing life threatening.  

The last time I laid it down, I had to have some surgery on my leg.  I was out for about a month.  It could have been worse, but it wasn’t.  Did I think about not riding anymore? 

Yes. 

Was I apprehensive after I got back in the saddle? 

Yes. 

But I’m still riding, because I’m passionate about it.  I don’t think bikers have a death wish.  I think bikers have passion and have a need for the adrenaline that this lifestyle produces.   

When I posted this question on my Facebook page, the responses were varied, and intense.   Most responses had something to do with surviving an accident, and still riding.  Some said “yes” they had quit riding because of an accident.  

There’s no question that it’s more dangerous on the road.  There’s no question that drivers are more distracted than they used to be.  But the way I look at it, deep down in your gut, you know when something is right or wrong for you.  That voice in your head tells you when it’s time to “stop” or “go.”  We all know what our threshold is.  We all know what our limits are.  And we all know when it’s time to quit.

There’s no shame in that.

One of my dearest friends and mentors rode almost his entire life, and this year, he just walked away.  It was time for him to move on from motorcycles.  He didn’t want it anymore.  He didn’t want anything to do with it.  He had just survived a terrible illness and God spoke to him and pointed him in a different direction and there was no motorcycle involved. 

So don’t judge those who just walk away.  Don’t judge those who think you’re crazy for riding.  Don’t judge the young man who has a family and doesn’t want to risk leaving his kids behind.  Bikers talk a lot about respect, so we have to respect a bikers decision to park his bike and never ride again.   

This lifestyle is a passion and we get to express ourselves in our own unique way.  I love this journey I’m on and I thank you for sharing it with me.  

Ride safe my friends!


About Hank Bonecutter

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