My sister and I hiked Borestone Mountain here in Maine yesterday. It was a great time! Here's the deal, though: this meant so much to my sister and I. We did this for a reason.
See, when we were younger, we would be involved in teen retreats a lot. These retreats almost always occurred in the summer and almost always involved hiking a mountain.
Maybe you can relate to this next part.
No matter what, I was always dead last in our hikes. Which also means I had adult chaperones (most in very good shape) I was also slowing down, as well as a few others who could have gone a little faster, but had to wait for me.
When I say I needed a break, I mean, I would have to sit down every few minutes to catch my breath - watching all of my friends and everyone else pass me by with sympathetic smiles and nods. Soaked in sweat and unable to take another step. Then I'd summon all my strength and go for a few more minutes until I could barely breathe again.
Sometimes I'd make it, sometimes I wouldn't. And this happened to both my sister and I.
It was pretty much one of the most dreaded times of the year. Eventually, I just gave up and opted out of hiking at these retreats because I knew I would slow everyone down. To say it was embarrassing is putting it lightly.
So after all these years, you know what my sister & I did yesterday? We kicked this mountain's butt. We didn't run it (someday, maybe!), but we booked it. And we did not sit down - not even once - until we reached the top. We made it - and we made it TOGETHER.
So why am I putting this here for all of the world to see? Because I know there are many out there who are still taking many breaks, still feeling like they're holding up everyone around them, watching others pass them by on their own journey to get healthier.
Maybe you're like I was, waiting for your opportunity to opt out, thinking of excuses to use to get out of having to climb your own mountain. Maybe you've already elected to sit out because you have reached the defeated point in your journey.
Find your determination and climb your mountain. Even if you initially have to stop every five minutes and breathe. Even if you feel like it will take you years to reach the top. Start at the bottom, and give this journey everything you've got. Find someone to help cheer you on, and push you to be better along the way.
Wherever you're at, as long as you're determined, you WILL get there.
Don't you dare give up. EVER!