“You only get one lap in this life, make it count.” by Jen Dunstan

Jen with her SV, Angie, in Virginia

Jen with her SV, Angie, in Virginia

Jen Dunstan, formerly Jen Ross, has been around the motorcycle industry for several years. She has road raced in the vintage class back east and is currently #70 with CVMA. She also contributes articles and test rides for MotorcycleUSA.com. As she plays such an integral part in this recovering industry, it adds so much weight to what you’re about to read. 

I have always respected Jen as a rider and racer. Her words below remind me so much of me and the emotions I’ve felt over the years after losing so many of my friends to motorcycle accidents. But she sees a bright side to it all and it’s that bright side that drives us as riders to see past the danger and go on living our lives as best we know how. Thank you for these words Jen. Cheers.

 

321328_705865378135_440170260_nBy Jen Dunstan via Facebook:

“Yesterday there was a motorcycle fatality on the I-15 freeway. My co-worker saw the wreckage, and our printer knew the lady rider well. Her name was Wendy. Wendy was riding her Harley during her morning commute to work. It just another regular day, but then a pick-up truck on the opposite side of the freeway punched through the cement jersey barrier. The force of the flying cement fragments tore Wendy off her motorcycle (which continued riderless for many feet) and into traffic, where she met her end. Wendy’s fiancee was also commuting to work, and drove by the wreckage, not realizing his whole world had changed until he spotted her crashed motorcycle.

Jen with husband, Alex

Jen with husband, Alex

I cleaned my street bike today. It was covered in dust. The last time I rode it was nearly seven months ago on a quick jaunt around the neighborhood to make sure she still runs. I crashed on a California freeway last year, I had a bruise or two and some cosmetic damage to the bike. I wiped the rag across the scraped paint, over the hole where a blinker should be. I thought about my husband finding me dead, I thought about me finding him dead. My heart tumbled and ached for Wendy’s fiancee. I admired the shiny clean side of my gleaming silver SV, I frowned at the marred fairing on the other side.

The two sides of the coin. Metallic beauty on one side, and mangled, scarred plastic on the other. Heads or tails. Life or death. More than ever, I reconsidered keeping my street bike. I reconsidered the dangers of racing. More than ever, I counted all the lucky stars for my husband, my friends, my family, my life.

But I can’t live in fear because life is too short. Eventually we will all meet an end. We do not get to choose when, we do not get to choose where, or how. But we can choose how we live. Hug your loved ones, live for each moment of each day, live with no regrets. You only get one lap in this life, make it count.”

I am

I am every person who has ever learned to ride.

An emancipated slave from the box with steel sides

I am the freedom and adventure made possible by a machine.

And the most empowered whipping pony tail any man has ever seen.

Every life lost is weight stacked on my shoulders

Weight I carry willingly as long as I grow older

Because if you want to know what living a full life is like

Park your fear, grab your gear and take a step outside.