Pain cellar. There is this place deep inside of me that I am no longer willing to go to. Actually, it’s more than an unwillingness. It’s more like a newfound inability. So many years spent regularly venturing there. Relentlessly practicing. Going deeper and deeper. Mind over matter. Mobilizing every last bit of willpower. Attempting to overcome. Forcing it. Fighting against my own body. At war with the very framework that keeps me alive. Physically thrashing my own life-giving anatomy. My body’s instincts begging me to back off. Still stubbornly pushing through. The lactic acid burn of each effort highlighting the smoldering effect of my inner hellfire. A desperate attempt to release what I have been suppressing for so long. The rescue method that I have used so many times before, without realizing that it only releases the pressure, but never really cleans up the mess. Aggressive force can never shine light onto repressed darkness. This is the type of pain that can never be conquered. It requires a merciful approach to melt it away. Riding for me is no longer a form of self-punishment for the pain that I cannot feel. It’s a friendship with my body. A harmonious camaraderie with my soul. An act of kindness. A gesture of self-love. A peaceful coaxing. A prayer inviting what is no longer serving me to check out. How clean do you keep your inner basement? Pain cellar.