Day 5 – It’s okay…


Day 5 of our trip was hands down the most challenging.  Not necessarily physically challenging, although it was, but more so mentally challenging. We were bagged. Having gotten into camp the night before around 10:00pm when it was already dark, walking to find water to filter, setting up tents, making dinner, and then finally passing out before midnight – we were done. It was almost too tiring to talk.  So hence, our late start Friday morning.  This is how it started for me, once again passed out in the sand (a common theme of this trip), before the day even began.

There was one point on the trail where Mandy and I were crying from laughing so hard.  Josh and Heather were up ahead and could hear us busting a gut from far out of site.  This was when we still had about 4 hours to go.  I was feeling strong and on fire at this point, but could tell that my body was slowly starting to break down.  I think I was starting to go a bit nuts from pushing myself so hard for so long.   Not too long after this bust-out belly laugh extravaganza, I broke down. I was done.  I stood there on the trail and started to cry. I just needed to be alone to feel sorry for myself for a few minutes.  I was thinking, ‘how the hell am I going to finish this damn thing?‘.  The words “I can’t” were floating above my head.  That’s where help stepped in. A lighter pack, a shared cookie, a rest break, some venting and I was pretty much good to go.  Thanks guys :)

This was hard for me, because as it was happening I remember thinking how stupid I was going to feel after the fact.  Standing there crying from being so tired.  Who does that?!  But I couldn’t stop.  I had to let it out.  In reality, I needed that quick cry – feeling sorry for myself – moment.  I needed to be pissed off. And I needed my friends to understand this, to accept it – and of course they did.  They were in it too.  They understood.

As time passed, and I stopped feeling sorry for myself, I started thinking of how fortunate I am to be able to do things like this.  The four of us help sick people on a regular basis, who for the majority are unable to do so many of the things that come so easy to us – that we often take for granted.  We were just fortunate to be out there, moving our arms and legs. Taking it all in.  It was a healthy reminder that life is pretty damn amazing, even through the so-called ‘tough times’.  And better off, I CHOSE to do this.  I knew what I was in for, so it was time to slip off the muddy grumpy pants.

It’s okay to break down.  A breakdown is sometimes the best thing that can happen to us – to allow us to breakTHROUGH.  To see things clearly.  It’s a healthy release. Sometimes our body physically needs a good cry.  Even in the middle of a beautiful forest with mud up to your knees.  Crying is healing, as my counsellor has told me in the past.  Anger is healthy.  Frustration is healthy.  They are all natural and healthy emotions.  If we store them all up, we feel like a shooken up soda bottle ready to explode. Not a good feeling at all.

The key is to deal with the crappy feelings as they come up. Acknowledge them, accept them, and then deal with them before moving on.  We all know this is harder than it sounds, and it definitely takes practice.  So the next time you feel like a shooken up soda bottle, allow yourself to feel what is actually going on. Don’t hold back.  If you have to cry, cry.  If you have to yell, yell (maybe into a pillow?!).  But let it out. It’s okay.  Find somewhere calm, where you feel safe and let out all of your emotions.  It’s surprising how quickly the anger and frustration can melt away with this simple release. Also, it’s amazing how much people want to help in situations like this.  It’s almost instinctive. In showing your not-so-pretty side, your true authentic self, it brings you closer to one another.  Your raw and true self.  It’s almost a gift, because not everyone gets to see it. It’s even a gift to yourself.  For allowing it to happen.  For trusting in it.  So listen to your feelings, share your gift and realize it’s okay! Breaking down is natural. It’s how we break THROUGH. :)

Smile with your heart!

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9 comments

  1. Again, i love your amazing photos! So kind of you to share your journey/adventure! Oh my gosh…I am in awe at the serendipity of your posts to my life! Today I absolutely had a breakdown…cry, cry, cry. And I felt a million times better after the cry! It IS okay and it is necessary to let out all the pent up emotions. Don’t worry, you are not alone! I, too, have cried from physical exhaustion. :) Eat more chocolate!!! hahaha
    Blessings to YOU!!!

  2. Agreed!!! Letting yourself cry such a good thing and good to release anything bottled up. Makes you feel so much better and it’s so bad to hold it in. We are taught our whole lives for the most part not to cry so it can be hard for some, especially men, to release like this. It totally is a break through. Nothing like a good healing cry to make you feel better. I am definatley good at releasing like that…my fiance doesn’t know what to do with me at times but he’s getting used to it i think:) It’s just me…i like a good cry and try not to hold it in too much. Sometimes it’s hard if you don’t have a safe place, like at work. Work has been so stressful lately that i had been crying at work but trying to hold it in at the same time, not good. Because that just made me feel worse and then you keep feeling like you are going to cry and do because you don’t let yourself totally let go for that one good cry and then move on. Once you have that one good cry all your frustrations and stresses are released and then it’s like you are a new person and ready to battle the challenges ahead. Thanks for such a great post thats so raw and real:) Keep on keeping on:)

  3. You’re so full of awesomeness Jenn! You put a smile on my face and you help me carry me over some rough times with your words of happiness and stoknes (is that even a word, probably not but now it is :D ).
    I’ve had a pretty drastic year. Death of my dear brother, broken heart, lost friends, lost trust, moved out on my own (from a almost five year relationship), new job and just a new me in many ways.
    I just wanted to say I love the note about falling getting bruises, reach for your goals, time will heal etc. TOTALLY made my day! Thank you!

  4. Post above was meant for day 3… scan, pick and commit :)

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