Look at Your Feet

This past summer, I took a road trip across the U.S.

One of the people I talked to said that you shouldn't look at the top of the mountain because its intimidating.

"Look at the middle of the mountain." He said.

And then I forgot about it.

Cut to about a year later and I'm realizing how vital that advice is going to be in my life.

Sometimes there are obstacles in our lives that are so big; so mountainous, that they seem overwhelming and insurmountable. There is nothing to be done and no way to get to the other side of what I am facing. Take one look and go back to base camp.

'Maybe tomorrow.' I say.

In that moment of uncertainty; of fear, I am suddenly disconnected from myself. Until I catch sight of that mountain, I can do anything! And then, just like that, I can do nothing. I stare at it and I will myself to move toward it; I will myself to not be a pansy and take it on; I will myself to do it and I crumble. I choke. My will disintegrates and the shame creeps in.

I channel my shame into acting tough and numbness, anger and blame. Its still just shame. Its still just little dramas I act out to make me feel like I'm filling the gaps of a desire for forward motion. It doesn't work. The only way that works is to climb the mountain.

But how?

I've learned that I can't even look at the middle of the mountain. Its still too intimidating.

So I look at my feet.

Then I take a step. And another. And I'm connected to myself. I'm connected to who I am in this moment and who I'm trying to be. And I don't look at the mountain. I know its there.

And maybe, eventually, thats how I'll climb over it.


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