When we push through and accomplish something we’ve been afraid of, or dreading, the satisfaction at the other end is often enormous: relief, surprise, happiness, pride. Even if it’s nothing particularly remarkable in the eyes of others, it’s the doing in spite of hesitation, the overcoming of inner resistance, that makes it seem a personal triumph.
An example for me is my recent road trip to Alberta: eight days away, about 2500 kilometres. Helmut and I enjoyed road tripping, but he did most of the driving. I might spell him off for an hour or two, by which time I was tired but he’d had a snooze and was good to go again. He liked driving; I felt he was better at it than I was. I suppose it was just one of those intuitive patterns couples fall into over the years. In fact, I ‘d never filled up the car with gas until the last year of his life, when it occurred to me I might need to know how, and he showed me. He had always kept track of everything about our vehicles. Besides, if need be, there were gas stations like Domo or Co-op where I could pull in and they did it for you.
Anyway, back in winter when everything concerning summer seemed possible, I agreed to attend a school reunion with my long-time friend Miriam, and decided to combine it with visits with other long-time friends — Eunice and Ruth — in Edmonton and Calgary, as well as my grandson Ben. As July neared, however, I grew nervous at the prospect and kept wanting to change my mind! But I’d promised, and I knew I should give it a try.
And I did. Every destination I reached, thanks to the lovely guiding voice in google maps (whom I thanked aloud more than once, as if able to speak she must also be able to hear) boosted my confidence. The visits were good, and the reunion after 50 years, though a “time warp” in Miriam’s words, had its surprises and gifts. I was kept safe and returned home with the satisfaction of it all, and perhaps a little more pluck.
Out of quite a few, just two memorable moments: my first glimpse of Mount Robson, highest peak in the Rockies, crowned with clouds, as I rounded a curve on the Yellowhead Highway from Yalemount towards Jasper. And, finding that, unbidden, tears were sliding down my face during the grand entry (with its drumming, colour, glory), thinking especially of the women, at a powwow my photographer friend Ruth took me to in southern Alberta.
Do you have any recent stories of “pushing through” to reward on the other side?