I have had a few people comment about me going mud bogging as if this were a new thing. This is not a new thing. Yes, I am going more than I have before, but this isn’t my first time going to an off-road park or riding in the woods. I think it gets forgotten how old I actually am sometimes. I am old enough to remember a time before cameras on your phone and social media. My high school and college years did not include Instagram or Snapchat. To get pictures then, you had to bring an actual camera and take the film to get developed. While there were many pros about those times, the cons were that there isn’t a ton of documented evidence of all the fun I had. There is no Timehop that goes back that far.
I think people often put others in categories because it is easier to deal with them that way. They want them to be a specific way or do specific things. When they deviate from the category they have placed them in they cry out, oh, you’ve changed. I would like to think I don’t belong in any category. If I had any category at all it would be one that is growing and always going on new adventures. Or maybe my category is, likes to be outside, but wants to shower at the end of the day. A little city and a little country and a whole lot in between.
I never would have thought that I would meet a guy on a cruise ship in the Bahamas and end up at an off road park covered in mud with that same guy a month later. Those aren’t things that you think will happen, but they do. This same guy and this same girl also love to eat gourmet cuisine, travel, watch movies, tour museums, plummet from giant swings to our uncertain death (jk – that is exaggerating), fish, kayak, swim in cold springs, laugh with sweet little girls, go to festivals, sing at church, cheer on our favorite football teams (even though we don’t always agree on who we are cheering for), get scared at haunted houses and countless other adventures. We also clean up pretty well, too.
My point is, I like to do a variety of things. Actually, I love to do new things and will try most anything at least once. I love being in a relationship with someone who likes to try new things and go on new adventures just as much as I do. As an addict, I do get stuck on things, almost addicted in a way. Yes, I want to fish. I still think about it and am making plans to go, but y’all, there are only so many hours in a day. I am learning to prioritize my time and diversify the activities I chose to spend that time on. It is hard for me, because it does seem like nothing is ever enough and I constantly look forward to the next thing. So part of what I am really actively working on is being in the moment and not concerned with what comes next.
What do I like about riding in the mud? It really is hard to explain. What I like is riding. I like to go. I like the feeling of adventure when you are cruising around on a four-wheeler or side by side. I love being outside, so I actually prefer riding trails through the woods. There really is this sense of peace when you ride deep in the woods. There is also a fun sense of community when a group of people go together. You life and smile together. You help each other out without question or hesitation. You listen to music and just have a good time.
I hadn’t been to a mud bog since I quit drinking, so I did question if it would be as much fun as it used to be. I always question that with activities that I used to do often when I was drinking, things like camping, the beach and football games. I can tell you from experience, they are just as much fun sober as they are drinking. Even perhaps more fun because I actually remember them now. Saturday was a blast! We road through a muddy lazy river, got stuck in a mud pit and rode all over just laughing while covered in mud. Sure, it isn’t for everyone, but I wouldn’t knock it until you try it.
I even drove the four wheeler by myself! Yes, I know, he is a brave soul for letting me, no encouraging me, to go through that mud pit on my own. He coached me first in an open field and patiently guided me through some rough gear shifts. Then he hopped off and told me he would video me as I went through on my own. I was terrified. I was sure I would get stuck, but he was supportive and talked me through it. I did it! Having someone who is kind and patient, yet firm and in charge makes all the difference. Click here to see my first mud ride solo!
I was also glad when he decided that it was time to go. That is the one piece of advice I would give to people in recovery. Go. Do the fun thing, but know when to leave. It is the same with going out to clubs or parties. It can be a blast until a certain point. Know when to leave. There were a bunch of people camping, but I was so glad we were going home to shower. I love to go out and get filthy muddy, but I also love hot showers and AC. As I said my goodbyes and watched him load up the four-wheeler, I saw a gorgeous rainbow. It really just made me feel this overwhelming sense of joy. When you truly love who you are and are comfortable with yourself alone, that is when the true magic happens. I went on a cruise looking to have a great time on one of my first girl’s trips since I got sober. I was there to soak up sun and swim in the beautiful water. I did those things and while I was busy having a great time celebrating me, God just happened to put this Georgia boy on the same ship. This post isn’t about all that, but that rainbow just hit me right in the heart, the same place he seems to be.
I can tell you that I do not know what the future holds, but I can tell you that my right now is pretty freaking spectacular. I can tell you I am truly happier than I ever thought possible. I love being a mom, my career, my family, my friends, my adventures, my boyfriend and just who I am in general. I know that there will still be obstacles. The difference is, now, I know I can overcome them all with my faith and those things I think might break me, will be used by God to make something even more amazing.
So, go on that adventure. Get filthy and muddy. Enjoy getting stuck. It is all only temporary, so live in that moment.