Injuries, Insecurities, and Putting My Pack Back On!
Did I underestimate the trail? Is my body telling me to quit? How can one knee cause so much anguish? These are all things that were running through my mind as I made a shaky decent into the gap where I had told myself I needed to try my hand at hitch hiking and get into the closest town. My knee was swollen and bruised and the downhill was my new nemesis. Cursing the incoming storm and my less than impressive knee, I bid farewell to my friends that I had made and hopped into a golden Buick that was being driven by a Starbucks barista named Brit. Although the conversation was nice enough I still kept my knife in my hand in my pocket. Seeing as I had no service, no one to tell where I was heading, and honestly no idea where I was I felt it was a good idea to stab this “Brit” fella if he tried anything fresh.
This was about two weeks ago. My husband had to rally down to GA to pick me up from a Bar and Grill where I had hobbled to and set up shop for six hours waiting for him. After a few…okay maybe more than a few, $2 PBRs to null my pain and anger of leaving the trail life I had grown to love, he finally arrived. Getting into a doctor was my next stop. Being told I had a sprained knee and needed physical therapy sent me into a bit of an emotional downward spiral. All of my planning, training, gear hunting, and hype were all for nothing. Or so I thought.
Dreaming of the trail and running tons of ideas by my husband of ways I can spend my next few months led me to think, “Hey I will go to Maui!”. I signed up to volunteer on organic farms across the country and have had a ton of amazing offers from some fantastic people. I had pretty much every detail lined out and then it happened…Two days ago I put my pack back on. In the midst of my eyes filling with tears I said out loud to myself “Why the fuck are you going to Maui?” So without having an answer to my own question, I’ve decided this. I’m heading back to the trail in a week! I’ve been going to physical therapy and doing my prescribed exercises. I have all of my gear still packed up. There’s nothing that I would rather do than head back out and hike. I miss the trail, I miss the people, and I need to stop feeling as though I’ve been defeated.
I hope that my body can take me to Maine, and I am still a hopeful thru-hiker. However I would rather be in the mountains all Summer than sitting at home with an elastic band around my leg trying to prepare for next season.
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