Making Our Way

It’s so hot. We’re all tired. Our bodies are revolting. We’ve had better days.

My mom has a horrible cough and woke up really hot this morning, so she went to the doctor, got medicine and did not walk today. (She’s feeling better!) I’ve got a cold or allergies, so my face is full of snot. Knees are wearing out. Feet are blistered and cramped. Legs are beyond tired. Souls are struggling. Buen Camino! (Insert eye roll here)

We chose this though. All 15 of us. We wanted to be here. We paid money for this. We sought it out. We made the choice, as uniformed as it may have been.

I’m not sure what the lesson is today. Perseverance in the midst of suffering? Depending on those around you when you want to give up?

Although I’m tired and don’t feel well and am melting in this Spanish heat, I don’t feel broken. I suggested to my brother that perhaps I’m holding up because my soul has already been broken, still is. I’ll take a steep hill and sore feet and high temperatures over the pain I’ve experienced in the last year and a half any day.

One of my walking friends asked why I’m here. I think I’m here to prove that my body is strong and capable. I think that’s why I keep running too — to feel my body doing something hard, something challenging. I’m here because I’m not home with a baby. I’m here because I still feel like my body betrayed me and when I climb hill after hill I am reminded that my legs are strong and my lungs breathe well and my heart pumps hard and my feet will keep going step after step.

Tomorrow we reach Santiago. I didn’t have any expectations on what I’d feel when this walk was over. A friend texted me saying she hopes I “feel full” when this is done. After reading that, I realized the Camino can’t solve my problems. I won’t go home and magically have eggs available. I will still be sad sometimes and I will still have to walk away when someone starts talking about having a baby. The Camino can’t change any of that.

But, the Camino will remind me that I’m strong. That I can do hard things again and again and again and again. Life will never be simple. I’ll never get over this, but I will be able to walk through it step by step — some steps easier than others.

This is hard, really hard. It’s hard seeing people around me suffering — both externally and internally. It’s hard because for the most part, I can’t fix it for them. I can do the laundry and I can take the top bunk and I can get some water, but I can’t walk it for them, I can’t fix their sore bodies. So, we each limp in our own ways, making our way to Santiago the best way we can.

Peace.


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