Getting back to life

It has been too long since I wrote a blogpost last. I have been meaning to do it for a long time, but stuff just kept getting in the way.

As you know if you have been following my journey, this past year has been a real rollercoaster, and I have been struggling to stay afloat. But I have kept my dream of riding my bike in front of me like a carrot.

It has now been 1 year since I had my accident, and it has been a long road to get to where I am right now.

Mentally I am still struggling a bit. Struggling to stay motivated, and to stay positive. Every day kind of feels like a battle. But physically I feel like I am starting to feel ok. I am not back to where I was before the accident yet, and I probably never will be, but I am back to a relatively normal life.

I still have quite a lot of pain in my stomach, and my stomach muscles are still not very strong. But This week I managed to do my first sit-up! So that’s something…

Ever since I got out of the hospital I have been going to a Physio and PT to build my strength back up. I have not been able to use my stomach muscles directly, so I have been working on strengthening all the muscles around so that I don’t rely on my core so much. Progress has been slow, but I have felt that I have been getting stronger.

But the biggest issue is still my bowels. This may be too much information, but since I have ⅓ less storage space in my colon I have to use the bathroom a lot more often, and it is kind of painful some times. This is likely I will have to live with for the rest of my life so I just have to get used to it.

Normally it is not that big of an issue, as long as I have a bathroom nearby. But I have noticed that it has been a bit difficult when I am on the road. I've had to pull over and run into the woods a few times.

I was nervous about starting to ride again, but as soon as I got on the bike it felt like I had never left it.

I have spent the spring and summer getting back in shape and going on a few trips around Norway on my bike.

Thomas Hansen and Christian Strømstad

After What happened with Pia I was very far down, but luckily some of the guys we met last year when attending Bukkerittet reached out to me and asked me to come riding with them.

This happened just at the right time, when the snow started to melt in May. That helped me to get out of my own head for a bit and spend some time with other people. And it motivated me to keep going.

Then they invited me to go on a trip with them for a week, and that was the kick I needed to get excited about riding and traveling again.

Christian , me and Elias at Dalsnibba above Geiranger in May 2021

In July I had almost a month off work, and since I was not allowed to leave the country due to corona, I decided to ride around Norway and see some of the places I have wanted to see for years.

That was my very first longer motorbike trip by myself.

My first night solo camping in July 2021

I have kept dreaming and wanting to go on a big trip ever since I was in the hospital, but after Pia died I was not sure I would enjoy it. But this trip proved to me that I still enjoy riding, although solo is very different form riding with someone.

So I am still planning on going on a journey. But it seems that my original plan of going to Africa is not a good idea at the moment. Conflicts, wars and trouble at many borders makes it almost impossible to travel down west Africa.

So I have decided to start off by traveling around Europe and/or going to North America instead. I have just started to look into all the logistics and stuff to ship my bike over the pond, and all the visa and import paperwork I need to do.

I still don’t know if it will be possible because of the way the world looks, but I’m hoping.

I am not able to go anywhere until I get my second vaccine dose, so until then I am just planning and working on building up this Ride the bean project.

I still don’t really know exactly what I want to do with it, but having it helps me have something to focus on so I don’t fall back into the darkness I was in a while a go.

I find it very difficult to be on social media. I have never really used any social media platforms before, other than just keeping in touch with people I’ve met. And I am so uncomfortable when it comes to posting anything there. Instagram and facebook is kind of a nightmare. But it does let me connect with people.

I would like to learn how to be better at it though. If anyone has any tips or want to teach me how I can best utilise social media then I’d appreciate all help I can get.

When I finally get to start my trip I want to share whatever it is I am doing on the road in an interesting way.

Although I have been very slow updating my website this past year, I want to do a better job going forward. So I will be writing more blogs where I try to share some more of my thoughts about what I am experiencing.

Thank you so much to all of you who have been with me this year and encouraged me to keep going. I am not very good at replying to people all the time, but I really appreciate it. You have all been a big motivation for me to keep going.