And then never ask a group of guys on a mountain bike forum a simple question and expect a simple answer. All I wanted was another shifting option for my Mukluk and I know not all components are compatible and asked for options. Twist grips are hard on my hands. Fibromyalgia is a PITA which doesn't help with grip shifts. It's as simple as that. I hadn't expected (but should have) a "you just don't know what you are doing and twist grips are the best ever". Which I guess is a simple answer.
Turns out my Muk has SRAM X7 components that aren't compatible with anything in the Shimano line. I can get X7 trigger shifters or keep the twist. I think I can move up to X9 stuff, but that doesn't mean it's any easier to use. Or I buy different parts and spend more money on Shimano. I just wanted another option for shifting, not buy more components.
Which leads into my thought of women really are different when it comes to bike riding. We have smaller hands, smaller shoulder widths, and aren't as strong as men. For me, riding a 30+ pound bike with a left grip shifter that isn't easy to use makes for some rough riding at times. It's murderous going up steep hills. If your bike components don't work for your needs you can't get better. However; if you haven't learned to use the parts correctly, getting something else is pointless and I get that as well.
I've bought sewing machines that I thought were perfect but after some time realized I didn't like them. There wasn't anything wrong with the machine itself or my skills at the time, but it just wasn't working out. Janome machines aren't for me as I'e discovered and I love my Vikings. Once you find that right machine that you bond with, quilting becomes more enjoyable and your skills improve. However; buying a machine that's way over your skills will prove just as frustrating.
I'm wondering if my Mukluk is something I'm just not strong enough to use. I miss a bike with suspension. I miss having something light and agile. At the same time there's that fat bike smile that I would really miss.