Burnout and Stress, Parenting, Personal Wisdom, Travel

Silence

Silence

 

After 3 to 5 hours of hiking, baskets full of silence fill to space between us. Silence filles the sweeping landscape, as well.  I love this time in the hike.   We walk, breathe, appreciate, are together – in silence.  The silences that come before are of different quality. Sometimes they are angry at the hills going up and down.  Sometimes they are filled with daydreams.  Admittedly, sometimes they are filled with panting. However, this time of silence comes with contentment and togetherness.  No just together with each other, but together with everything, the wind, the hills, the grass… All of it.

 

I am fortunate to have a child that I weaned on grassy silences and miles under her feet.  She will hike 6 hours for the price of a couple of shared scones and a package of blueberries.  Even better, whenever I ask if she wants to go to the road, she asks if that is how the trail goes, and if it doesn’t go to the road, neither does she want to.  I am lucky that way, as sometimes I would definitely go to the road myself, missing some of the beautiful sites!  She amazes me, tolerating hours of rain, hours away from Percy Jackson books. I don’t know why, sometimes. However, I am always grateful.

 

As we hopped down the rocks of Hadrian’s Wall Trail, I realized that I have an opportunity. Like my daughter, I have the opportunity to create who I am in my next tomorrow.  I was thinking about my foot, the plantar fasciitis I acquired the last year. Stress related. Standing long hours on a hard floor. The running, I believe, was just ancillary.  Today, it is bothering me a bit, but yoga, physical therapy, and destressing have changed it substantially.  Today, I am hopping down rocks, flying towards my next future, just as she is flying towards her first future.  I can choose something thoughtfully, something that allows me health, that is lower in stress.  What a wonderful gift!

 

Before we set out on this trip, I told my fiance that I was happier, that I could finally feel the lessening of stress.  That is wonderful.  As it this.  This is different.  It’s like the idea is really viscerally dawning on me. I have a new start!

 

We both have the opportunity to choose a future. I am hopeful for both of us.

 

Today’s Favorite Food: Sticky Toffee Pudding

 

 

 

Parenting, Travel

THE ADVENTURE

 

THE ADVENTURE

 

And so it begins…

 

Not really. It’s been going on for quite a while already. Days. Maybe months.

 

But we are on the plane!

 

My fiancé was given a family trip to Alaska, that my daughter and I could not attend. I lightheartedly said, “Fine, then I am returning my computer, and taking my daughter Pony Hacking across England.”

That’s how it started.

 

Sigh.

 

Well, we are not Pony Hacking across England, but we are going to England. The Pony Hacking got cancelled when I thought about days 2, 3 and 3 of a 5-7-day ride.

I thoughtfully decide against a long Pony Trek.   I did return my Apple.  I got a PC for <1/4th the cost. Ad this niffy blue laptop for 200 bucks!  (Well – not THIs one – I poured water on the first one.  This is the second one, as they laptops are quite allergic to water.  That was when the Pony trek went out the window. The trip got a facelift:  A tourist trip of England (enough said right there, but wait there’s more) on a budget – so I would do the planning and booking. Yay! How hard could that be?

We raised a thousand dollars with garage sales! We couldn’t believe it.

After some point in time, however, the trip became “The Planning NightMare.”   It’s been torture. I have never had a more difficult planning of a trip.  The whole thing got bogged down.  Life happened.  Stress happened. Someone wouldn’t give me my daughter’s passport. Held hostage, after 7 requests, and months of delays.  Ugh- So ugly.  Influenza happened.  Not sleeping.  Getting engaged. Planning for a wedding, planning for a celebration. Planning to start a new business.  Planning time off for a honeymoon. Planning this trip – all of which was at odds with my work.  My work, which was at odds with my Self,  My life,  My Being.   Then there was quitting… you know. It’s been a little busy.

I had an idea of what I wanted to do in the north of England, but just couldn’t put it together. Over and over – it was a nut I couldn’t crack. For example –  If I did the hike I wanted, I ended up in a small town without bus service on a Sunday and couldn’t get out of.  I couldn’t for the life of me manage to understand the online booking system for the trains.  I finally gave up and booked a car. Gasp of horror! Yes – driving on the left side.  I am visualizing, turning left and into the left lane, stay to the left, go left….

It was the flight to Paris, that I really had a difficult time doing.  I delayed booking my trip to Paris, because I heard it was better to buy tickets over there, but that has not turned out so well.  I tried for the last 2 weeks, just to make a booking and could not do it.  My opinion is that EasyJet is really Drive You Crazy/Difficult Jet. I mean – Grrr! Just. Don’t GO there!  No matter what airline, I would find a slightly acceptable flight, finally, and when I clicked to purchase the site would time out and the fare was gone.

I spent hours on this one task.  Finally, the night before our trip, I tried one more time. I found a flight AND booked it!  WaLa! We were going to England and Paris. No Ponies. No PC’s.

 

Then there is my daughter. She is 13. Did I mention that?

She has still been wonderful, delightful, fun. Most of the time.

She came home and unpacked a full-on teen attitude.

She also came on Seattle time. 8 hours behind Seattle.

She has resisted everything so far.  Adjusting her sleep schedule.   Doing any thing except reading.  Even repacking into a bigger bag which – to her delight – she discovered she has better access to her activities and media. She rolls her eyes. The worst thing is that she just looks at me like her face is dead.  It’s hard enough when I am gross or stupid, but that dead look really gets me.

I guess I am going to have to get used to that. It will put my self-esteem on the chopping block. It used to be so easy to be …esteemed.  Now – I just have to Esteem Myself…. Be myself. Otherwise – everything I do is just too embarrassing to do, and I can be me at all.  That won’t happen! But – it is still hard!

Sigh.

So here we go.

On our trip.

We’re going to drive all over the country on the wrong side of the road. I am going to be embarrassing.  While doing this, I will be working on my self-worth.  At the end of 10 years or so, I should be bomb proof!

 

All this being said, there will be a lack of recipes for a few weeks. I hope you can tolerate it.  So, hang on, we’re going to go for a ride. I should be back to herbs in a few weeks.