A year ago today I harnessed up, strapped on a pair of shiny new climbing shoes, quadrupled checked a knot that I barely knew how to tie and went climbing outside for the first time. That day I fought my way up several of what I’m sure were 5.7 or easier routes (basically like climbing a ladder) and I came home bruised and bloody and covered in chalk, knowing that my life would probably never be the same. I was right. I started climbing every chance I could get. I learned to lead climb and slowly started braving harder and harder routes.
There is nothing else when you are climbing. The world around you falls away until it is just you and the rock working side by side to accomplish something big. No drama, no heartbreak, no questioning all your life choices; there is just staying on the rock and concentrating on safety moving ever upward. In what was maybe one of the most challenging years for me personally, climbing taught me to persevere through debilitating fear and how to pick myself up, refocus, and keep moving after a fall. I won’t say I discovered these things on my own. There have been so many times where I’ve sat, suspended in mid air, repeating over and over that one route or another is impossible or just not for me. And sometimes it is just too hard... but the magic of climbing is that in a week or a month or even a year it won’t be too hard. What was once impossible becomes possible and there is no better feeling. So, if you’ve managed to read this far, credit where it’s due: thanks to @mockingbirds_and_magnolias
for getting me climbing for the first time and @blake.lange
for keeping me going, knowing when to push me forward, and knowing when to slowly ease me down. Here’s to another year of getting chewed up, spit out, and covered in layers of chalk and dirt. Onward. 📷 cred: @edotlugo