Written By Mesha G. – Official Contributor of The Crowned Series
On Mother’s Day, I went hiking alone. I wanted to do this. I needed fresh air and openness to overcome all the emotions I had this Mother’s Day.
Throughout the maturation of my adulthood, I grew to be appreciative of nature and being alone. I love being outdoors and just being. It wasn’t very much before my 29th birthday that I realized didn’t truly understand the meaning of “stop and smell the roses.” So, I made it my goal to slow down. I was very unsuccessful with that. In fact, I think I went at life even faster…I love to just keep going…no matter what. Taking a break from the voices of others is also a must-need for me; I need my alone time to recharge.
But this past Sunday, I had a day with absolutely nothing on my agenda. If you know me, you know that it’s huge for me to not have anything to do. I wanted to do something that I WANTED to do rather than HAVING to do… and I decided I would spend Mother’s Day hiking. I’m an early riser, so I got up, got dressed and sat for a second. I wasn’t talking myself out of the experience but I just wasn’t ready to go. A second turned into an hour or two and before I knew it, it was about 8:30am. I hurried and left as if I was missing something and made it to the park around 9:15.
I been on this trail before with others, so I knew what to expect and anticipate for the terrain. I did not expect for it to be me and probably 6 (at most) other crazies wandering around a national park early on a Sunday morning. Literally no one was there and my excitement to do this alone turned into to extreme nervousness. As I sat in my car I thought to myself, “What is your black ass doing out here in the middle of Wisconsin with a cell phone with horrible reception?” I didn’t bring mace or a knife like I usually do when I hike, I was just out there.
I had a ridiculous amount of hesitation. I thought about how I was alone, about being ill-prepared, about making the impulsive decision to go…all of it. And still with hesitation, I got out the car and started walking. I wasn’t comfortable enough to put in my headphones so it was literally just me and my thoughts surrounded by nature…by the way I was aimlessly walking. I thought I knew where I was going but I didn’t know shit. After walking a little over a mile, the nerves really sat in and I was approaching a road. I can see the bluff, but I couldn’t find my way to begin the terrain. I was walking and texting 2 of my friends and they both give me polar opposite advice…one is like keep going! And my other friend is telling me to get back to the car.
I eventually went back to the car and decided to go shopping (shout out to Nike AND Adidas for having bomb sales at the Outlet). On the way out of the park, I passed the path I walked to get to the bluff and no more than 50 ft away was the beginning of the bluff… all I had to do was to keep going. But I couldn’t help feeling defeated. I set my mind to do this, I traveled and made it there and did not finish. So after shopping, I went BACK to the parks to accomplish this goal I set for myself. There are a few reasons why I felt more comfortable the second try around. The first is I had eaten some food when I went shopping. I was able to preview my path and there was more people in the area.
Hiking the bluff wasn’t a breeze but I thoroughly enjoyed it and was ecstatic that I finished it. But the entire time, I felt like I was learning a lesson bigger than just being capable of climbing a big ass rock mound from the earth.
I’m not sure what would have happened if I kept going the first time, I’d like to think I would have been fine but who knows. A lesson I took away from this experience was this: moving too hastily can ruin the moment. Sometimes we rush life and don’t have any reason to. It wasn’t fear that made me stop. I drove there and started my walk to begin my hike, it was the fact that I was unprepared. That day was one of those days I rushed for absolutely no reason and caused myself regret that I couldn’t blame on anything or anyone else.
It’s okay to slow down and smell the roses some days or even wake up later than 5am on a Sunday morning.
– Mesha G., Official Contributor of The Crowned Series