A community of peers created by the Soaring Spirits Loss Foundation
“We can’t ever know for sure what’s going to happen next. We can do our best to dream and thrive, but we don’t know what’s going to happen five seconds, five minutes, or one year from now. What we can do is enjoy this moment and be in the present.” Author Unknown
This year has been full of new and exciting experiences and adventures that I probably would never have done prior to being widowed. Adventurous “normally” is not a characteristic used to describe me, nor one that I use to describe myself! However, this year adventure has become part of my “new normal”!
My “normal” has included generalized anxiety ever since I was a teenager. I do not know what it is like to live without some outburst of anxiety (emotionally, mentally, physically or all) on a daily basis.
Recently on a trip, I experienced a situation where “normally” I would have had excruciating levels of anxiety that probably would have impaired me to some extent.
Instead I experienced calmness and peace. (Two words I do not use to describe myself on a regular basis. Yet I seek to have these feelings on a regular basis.)
For the first time at camp, an offsite hike was offered as a workshop for camp alumni. I thought that sounding so relaxing and rejuvenating. So I signed up to go, and a dear friend of mine happened to be the leader which made it more fun! Not to mentionable several of my dearest widowed friends also signed up to go on this adventure!
After a yummy lunch and a brief run in with a overly friendly bumblebee (I’m allergic to bees) we made our way out to Torey Pines National Park where we hiked one of the trails.
Our hike was wonderful and the view was breath taking! Hiking with a view of the ocean. Simply breath taking. Not to mention 85* weather in August! Perfect scenery and weather for a brisk hike.
As we were making our way up the top of the hike, my friends and I come upon a guy & girl (idk if they were a couple or not) taking pictures towards the top of the trail.
Normally I would be experiencing anxiety, panic, asthma attack and an inclination to protect them from harm. Because of the location. Top of hiking trail. The guy is standing on top of this semi flat top rock that you have to climb up to to begin with and let’s not forget to mention the fact that there is NOTHING behind him if he were to slip, mis step or otherwise fall. Obviously except for the air, and the canyonish setting below.
That was my “normal” reaction.
INSTEAD, recall that calmness and peace I mentioned previously.
Instead of thinking all those thoughts and experiencing all that anxiety.
I see this man up there and I say, “THAT IS SO COOL, IM DOING IT” and I look at my friend and say can you take a picture of me? As I’m walking vastly to climb up to the spot.
A friend later described as, I saw I didn’t think I just went and did. Seriously from seeing to doing was less than a minute. My friend felt all my anxiety on my behalf.
Here I am!
I love this photo! It is so freeing to see. Yeah now I have some anxiety looking at it, just knowing that there’s nothing but air behind me. But to be there doing it, WANTING to do it is more freeing than I can put into words.
I did not let my anxiety take control, I let peace take control.
I remember standing up there thinking to myself how do I want to pose?, a friend suggested titanic pose but my widda brain got confused and this photo was the outcome. Looking back I should have not had the long sleeve on because you can’t see the “Widows Rock!” on the arm of the shirt. You can however see the “Widows Rock!” on the shirt I was wearing underneath.
*Note to self for next year!
I remember feeling this peacefulness, calmness and serene feeling while standing there on this rock towards the highest part of the hike. Yet, while I would have done the hike “before”, standing on this rock and having no control would NEVER have happened “before”.
After loss, so much of who we are changes and yet so much of us remains the same as well.
Once grief changes and we experience an “awakening” from our grief, oftentimes this is when we really become alive and begin to live!
All Material Copyright @ Greggies Widow
Photos used with permission