Sometimes when I have a tough day or week I like to think back on my experience hiking the Inca Trail a few years ago. I’d say this is one of my biggest accomplishments, but also one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done. Of course a lot of people do this hike and don’t have any issues but this story wouldn’t be mine if it didn’t include some difficult moments.
My husband and I trained for six months to prepare for the 26 mile hike to Machu Picchu. I ran a bunch of races, he lifted weights and ran with me. We were in great shape and ready to take on trail! When we got to Cuzco, Peru to acclimate to the altitude before hiking, I immediately got sick from a local restaurant (of course) and was off my feet for the days leading up to the hike. I got some antibiotics and was feeling decent by the time we started our walk. Just as I was getting over my issues my husband got horrible altitude sickness on the first night at camp. He ended up with it the entire four day hike, barely ate any food and lost almost 20 pounds over the week. This was pretty intense and obviously I was very worried about him. However, despite all the trouble we still pressed on each day and arrived at Machu Picchu on the morning of the fourth day filthy, exhausted and accomplished!
Even though we spent a lot of time taking breaks to (literally) catch our breath, we still finished. The experience was worth all of the pain. Not only did we get to see unbelievable sights but we also learned how to work together as a couple in really uncomfortable conditions. We learned a lot about our relationship, our bodies and our minds. This was pretty life changing, and honestly, I wouldn’t trade any of our time on the trail for a “better” experience (okay, maybe I could live without the Husband projectile vomiting into a ziplock bag in our tent :))
So what’s the point of this little sharing session? Patience. Sometimes life is stressful, uncomfortable or just isn’t fair. I’ve been surprised to find how quickly I overcome some of these things if I am patient with myself and those around me. This is not always the easiest thing to practice but worth giving a try.
“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day”
– Winnie the Pooh