“To Climb or Not To Climb”: Living with Intention and My Messy “YES”.

Choice. To write or not to write. For months, I have chosen the latter: thank you but no thank you, Word Press. I have a mountain of reasons, but mainly, I have found it a chore. One more to add to my grocery list of things to do: childrearing, paying bills, teaching and cleaning. “Writing” – hit delete.

But last week I said “yes” to something: “Yes, I’ll hike Mount Monadnock in New Hampshire.” Albeit a hesitant “yes” at first, and filled with fear (False Experience Appearing Real) of FLOPPING. Really, I mostly wanted to go to enjoy the company, mainly. And the expansive view. But from the moment I first saw her blue background summit, I realized completely this view would come with a price: Crag upon steep crag, ridge upon rocky ridge, a sharp burning in my legs, and the heart-out-of-my-chest-pounding-price.

Sweat was inevitable. I knew that. Pacing my breathing, a must. But at one point, the face of the rock, to achieve the next landing, as I was headed 3,000 feet up, was so steep, so smooth, and so fiercely impossible I said out loud, as my hopeful fingers searched for just one tiny crevice to grasp to gain momentum: “I can’t do it.”

And then the voice of my amazing climbing partner, at my back (who always has my back), encouragingly and forcefully said, “You can. Yes, you can.” And then, somehow, there was no other option.

I could.

I found the tiniest sliver of a groove, one that wasn’t there two seconds before; I engaged my biceps, and my willful mind, and pulled. And then I Billy-goat-hopped it all the way up to the next plateau. Ha!
I can do it!

And that’s the moment when my hesitant ‘yes’ moved into the hooray “YES!” A sweaty, messy “YES”! It moved from the circle of stating the intention (“I’ll climb Mount Monadnock”) To living the intention (I am climbing Mount Monadnock) To achieving the intention (I climbed Mount Monadnock! Ha!).

Mt Monadknock with Jaime

In deeper reflection, last fall, I wrote this in my journal:

“Stop thinking about the work. Find the flow. Fuel the flame. Forest fire your life… make messes!  Get dirty, build bridges, or just bake brownies. Whatever you do, find the process, find the love – without worrying about the *WOW* factor. Finalize OR Flop. Either way, something and somebody moved! And it mattered to you!”

Moving and Mattering in the days, weeks, and months to come is my intention – in all my messes, my building, and my baking of brownies (gluten and dairy free btw – still searching and experimenting for the tastiest recipe!).

And mostly in my teaching and my writing.

I hope to say a lot of yesses to Word Press this year.

AND A lot of other “YESSES!”, too.

If I have stalled in the past, it’s okay, cause I am moving again – finding grooves and biceps of strength that were not there just two seconds ago!

With intention. With encouragement. With a messy, sweaty yet emphatic “YES”!

Won’t you join me?

Blessings and Peace,

Pamela Rae



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