White flip-flops in the rain.

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First off, I am writing once again after a few months break. No matter what I do, I tend to fall back into my same old patterns of bursts of creativity interspersed between lulls of writer’s block. The past few months have been busy, but really….I have no excuse. I’ve been doing everything BUT writing this summer. My son will be a senior in high school, so I’ve had college visits, getting ready for senior year, driver’s license, etc. I just haven’t felt INSPIRED. I have so much on my plate, emotionally, right now that quite frankly, I haven’t felt like getting out of bed most days. My mom has been having more bad days than good. Most days I am walking on eggshells, which is exhausting. I’ve been stressing about my youngest being a senior.The thought of having him out of the house in a year has been weighing on me.

I feel like the only day I have to relax and forget about all the things that weigh on me is Sunday. So, the past few Sundays, we’ve been taking my photographer son on road trips to find some interesting shots. Anyone that knows me at all knows that I am NOT an outdoorsy girl. Don’t get me wrong, I like doing things outside. I’m not a couch potato. But, I don’t like the great outdoors. I like being in a city. I like exploring shops, bookstores, cafes, food markets, etc. I do like the beach, but in small doses…..under an umbrella….with a drink in my hand. I hate woods, hiking, camping, mud, rock climbing…well, you get the picture.

So, when we do these outings, I sit in the car and wait, while my husband takes my son on hikes. I’ll go on a paved path, if it’s a short trip. But, that’s about it. I keep a pair of “walking” shoes in the car, just in case. Yesterday, we found a cool overlook that is a hawk/raptor watch. It said easy hike. Our car was parked in a bit of a remote area, so I felt a bit uncomfortable sitting there and waiting and since it said easy hike, I figured why not.  I went for my “walking shoes”, but I had taken them out of a car when we packed for a trip a few weeks ago. I was wearing typical “me” shoes—-white flip flops with bows and jewels on them. I thought, ok…why not? Well, easy, short hike it was not. It was a rock climb, uphill.

Yeah, I could have turned around, but I thought….what the hell? If I can make it up this rocky hill in these shoes, I can do anything. When I’m told I can’t or shouldn’t do something, that’s when I’m determined to do it. So, on I climbed. I stopped a few times to catch my breath. By this time, it had started drizzling rain. On I climbed. I stopped and sat once, but then I noticed all the little crevices that snakes and insects could hide in and I jumped up and kept moving. Yep, hate all the creepy crawlies that live out in the wilderness, as well.

I reached the top of the lookout and may I just say, the climb was totally worth it. You could see for miles. It was spectacular. Just as I stepped up on the rock to take in the view, the heavens opened up and it started POURING!!! So, back down the slippery, wet, rocky trail I went in my white sandals. My husband held my hand the whole way down, as now the rocks were soaking wet and very slippery. I made it back to the car, looking like a drowned poodle, I might add. Seriously, my underwear and bra were even wet!! I felt miserable, yet accomplished at the same time. I had stepped out of my comfort zone for a brief period of time, all while wearing my stylish, yet impractical shoes and it felt good!

I will never take up hiking, camping, outdoorsy things as a hobby. I will continue to keep my walking shoes in the car for SHORT walks. But, knowing that I COULD do something kind of pumped up my self-image a little bit. I tend to get stuck in a rut. I love adventure and new things, but those things always tend to be within the same circle. This time, I was waaaay out of that place where I feel like myself and you know what? It was okay. I was okay. I think the reason I’m telling this story is that I feel like a lot of people I know get stuck in that purgatorial place of never really taking a chance. The older I get, the more I have been trying to take more chances. Live more fearlessly. I know that climbing a rocky mountain in flip-flops is trivial. But, one small step can sometimes be a giant leap, even if you’re not wearing the proper shoes.

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