Explorer Mikael Strandberg

Three weeks of roller coaster life

Yesterday I was sitting on a tree trunk in the magic beech forest of Torup. Breathing heavily. Hannah was lying on another trunk, breathing as heavily. Nothing hanky panky, we were doing Wim Hof´s beginners breathing. Another Hannah initiative. When it was over, we smiled happily at each other. She came over and we kissed passionately. Her last day in Malmö before heading home with her two kids to Vermont.

When I woke up at 4 a.m. this morning, I started the routines that dominate my life right now. I did some breathing, put on the cuff to check my blood pressure, did my 30 min yoga/rehab/wake up routine, put on the coffee (though it is a no-training day, so it should have been, no coffee) and ready to move into that life of routines I know so well. Training, work, cycle with girls to school, training and so on. Then do rehab, follow my athlete’s diet as much as possible. Day in and day out.

Since I went to the Pyrenees and met Hannah and her kids Loulynn and Eli the last week of March, my life has pretty much been turned upside down. A roller coaster. For the better. The last three weeks, Hannah and the team have shared our little three room flat in Malmö. 4 kids, two grownups. As everyone who has been in the same situation, it is with the hardest in a relation, trying to get two families to function together. One family with a 61-year-old heavy on routines and two girls with busy schedules and always time restricted. On the other hand, home school mum and kids with freer time restrictions. Two quite different worlds.

Believe me, it has not been all free flowing, but now, when it is over for now, I think we turned a sinking ship over, got it all floating safely and did well! Obviously, Hannah and my need to be together time was not enough. But such is life. Normal parenting with small kids. We did get a lot of needed her head on my chest, chilling together watching TV or doing the small things in life. Like going to the supermarket holding hands buying huge amounts of food for the kids, whose eating seems endless. Or going to the gym. Or taking a walk.

Hannah wants the big things in life with all her heart. The big Expeditions. I fully understand, if anyone. And they will come, for sure. But this time it was all about the small Expeditions in life. And we made it to the end of the journey, though as any Expedition, it was plenty of challenges on route. But we made it.

Damn, I have to wake the girls up and get them ready for school! Whilst cycling with them as I do every morning to school and back, Hannah will get her lovely kids ready, when I am back, we have 5 minutes to hug and say goodbye. Before they start their journey home.

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