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Putting Yourself In It

A question mark lingered over the last few days as the weekend grew closer. To hike or not to hike? The right ankle has been gimpy since the descent down Bridle Path a couple of weeks ago, when I apparently damaged it enough that hiking wasn’t a guarantee. But then my new hiking boots arrived, offering much better ankle support than the previous boots. A mix of ibuprofen and assorted balms would take care of the rest. And so I chose to hike with two jackrabbits who fly up mountains every weekend. This served to challenge both the ankle and the rest of me.

Waking up at 3 AM for an early start to a hike a 2 1/2 hour drive away was the next challenge, one that I managed with my usual stoic acceptance. The first moment of wonder for me came 45 minutes before arriving at the trailhead, driving through Jefferson, New Hampshire as the brightening sky illuminated distant clouds and mountain tops as I drove east. In that moment I accepted the day at hand, sucky parts as much as the amazing parts. And so it was that I found myself, new boot wrapped tightly around a gimpy ankle and hiking four peaks and 14 miles on my Sunday “rest day”. But I put myself into it willingly.

Ultimately, life is this short little blip. Highlighting the blip with wonder and a bit of hard work makes that blip seem a bit more relevant. If you don’t put yourself in it, you don’t reap the rewards. Today, despite some reservations, I put myself in it, and sure enough the moments of wonder appeared. In a year filled with challenges, a bit of wonder goes a long way.

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