So, I took a little break from finishing The Oldest Soul Trilogy this week to recharge with my family. It turned out to be a pretty profound and spiritual experience, one I’m excited to share with you guys.
First, I couldn’t be more proud of what my daughters and their friends Jack and Cooper accomplished along with my amazing husband and me and our dearest friends Jeff and Diana. Trekking 50+ miles of rugged often treacherous terrain, 18,000 feet in combined elevation changes the first day alone! And though we spent just 5 days backpacking along the Oregon section of the Pacific Crest Trail it was astonishing how many life lessons we were blessed to have been given…
1. There Will Be Obstacles (like, a lot of obstacles).
On the long road to your goals, big and small, there will be challenges. Life will test you. On the trail these obstacle are literal, obvious; a massive fallen tree blocking your path that must be climbed over or around or under, sometimes right next to a cliff. Breathe, make a plan, and meet the challenge head on.
2. Turning Back Just Isn’t an Option.
This became clear quickly. A stark reality on a trail like the PCT and a healthy reminder in life. You can’t go back to where you’ve been, you can only go forward. Even with just one shoe intact (Don FitzHenry) #ducttape
What’s done is done. Onward.
3. There Will Be Suffering.
Rain that won’t quit, clothes that won’t dry, feet that hurt more than you ever thought possible… and still so many miles to go. Sometimes things will be rough, sometimes you or someone you love will be suffering, and that’s hard, but understand that suffering is actually a beautiful present. Because when the sun finally does come out and dry your clothes and warm your frozen hands you’ll remember what an absolute miracle the sun is, and has always been. Whether you were paying attention or not. Suffering gets your attention and has a profound way of restoring gratitude. ✨
4. Change is Constant, Adjust, Adapt, Enjoy.
We kept marveling at how around every corner and over every ridge we were brought into a new world. A field of lava rocks as far as the eye can see gives way to a cold and dense fog covered ancient forest which turns to a sandy desert and leads to a fern covered river oasis of tide pools and breathtaking waterfalls. The winter jacket that goes on in the forest is quickly shed and just as quickly replaced by rain gear, 3 miles straight downhill turns to a steep incline to miles of mountain switchbacks; without any warning change is upon you. One minute you’re walking along feeling pretty relaxed and the next you’re summoning the courage to cross a rushing river over a slippery log with thirty pounds on your back. Life changes, constantly. You accept it and you keep going, resistance is not only futile it’s ridiculous. Change isn’t happening ‘to you,’ it’s just happening. Like life, a trail is what it is, it’s not personal. You don’t know what’s around the next corner… none of us do… and that’s more than okay. It’s as it should be.
Author, THE OLDEST SOUL TRILOGY