camino de santiago, grief, pilgrim, Walking

I Can Do Hard Things

I haven’t slept well for the past several months. I’ve blamed it on a variety of things but could never really pinpoint the issue. The last few nights have been hard with sleep, but once again I attributed it to the snorers or the jet lag. However, last night I began to face the truth of what’s probably going on.

When everyone in the room was cold and needed more blankets, I couldn’t find enough clothes to take off. I took a Benadryl and still tossed and turned most of the night. Even though I’ve always needed a lot of sleep, I seem to be functioning alright with less sleep. Something is abnormal — this isn’t my usual way of being.

I shared this with my mom (while also apologizing for blaming her snoring as the cause of my lack of sleep) and we both acknowledged the most likely cause — pre-menopause.

So, as I climbed (another) mountain, I cried and climbed, cried and climbed. And then I reminded myself that I can do hard things. I have been doing hard things and will continue to.

I was crying because I want a baby not pre-menopause. This isn’t fair. This is a hard thing.

Today I walked with our friend who has been walking the Camino since May 18. She’s quick. She doesn’t pause for long, but we started together and she was never too far out of reach throughout the day. For the first several miles we were within speaking distance. Later on I often lost sight of her. She knew I needed that and I knew I’d catch up with her eventually.

So, I spent a lot of time alone today. I enjoyed the beautiful views that popped up around every bend in the road. I also enjoyed the time to be still internally. After several days surrounded by people, I needed time alone. Some of it was sad, but most of it was awesome.

I don’t know what the Camino has to offer me in the end, but I know for today it gave me the reminder that I can do hard things. I can walk up a steep hill that appeared to be at least a 45 degree incline — perhaps more! I can walk alone in a different land because I know I’m never really alone. I can climb and cry, but not for too long because breathing is hard when I’m crying. I can seamlessly go between a time of reflection and a time of friendship.

None of this will be easy — life or the Camino. However, moving forward is always better than not. And, doing a hard thing is better than not. I don’t want to be stuck somewhere back there — I want to be moving toward the goodness of life and the only way to do that is to keep walking. So, I keep walking. And maybe I’ll go to the doctor when I get home.


1 thought on “I Can Do Hard Things”

  1. “Moving forward is always better than not.” I needed to read that to strengthen my resolve for this new season of life. Blessings, Anne!

    Liked by 1 person

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