Does Everyone Cry when They Get Their Permit?

When you’ve dreamed of something for so long and it actually really happens, it’s hard to process at first. When I clicked on the PCT permit page on Nov. 14 (@exactly 10:30 a.m.), I was 4,144 in line. I immediately felt defeated. I thought to myself, “I guess I’ll be waiting until next year.” Then when I got to the calendar I noticed there were still spots available in early March. That was amazing!

It still didn’t prepare me for the day that I got my email saying, “Congratulations!” After texting several people and hearing my oldest daughter say that I was going to do great, I started crying. I sat down and realized that I am actually going to be doing this in a few months. How do I even deserve this kind of luck?


I’m not a big believer in bucket lists. Life is too short (cliche, I know), but really. I try to live my bucket list. Every time something amazing happens to me I always say, “My life is complete.” And then I check off that item from my imaginary bucket list that was never actually on my bucket list. It’s a very good system, because my bucket list is always complete. I’ve lived an amazing life and if I died today, I am happy with all that I have experienced and accomplished. Like finishing my degree in molecular, cellular, and developmental biology at the University of Colorado, buying my first home, marrying an epic guy, having four amazing children, looking over a blanket of clouds from Mount Fuji, seeing wild monkeys playing in the treetops of Costa Rica, riding on a train through the Alaskan wilderness, having tea and biscuits in a castle and the Beltane Fire Festival in Scotland, lying on a beach in Hawaii, snowboarding in the Rockies, standing at the top of the Eiffel Tower, or seeing my three beautiful grandchildren being born into this world. Just to name a few. I’m one lucky girl!

Wild monkey in Costa Rica.

When I was 21 years old, I broke my leg and had many reconstructive surgeries. During one of my surgeries I had a reaction to the anesthesia and stopped breathing. The doctors had to resuscitate me. When I woke up and realized what had happened it was a bit overwhelming, but it gave me a newfound appreciation for life. Since then, I always feel like everything is “frosting” and I’m so blessed for all of the experiences since.

Don’t worry, I’m sure my legs will be fine for the PCT. I’m an avid hiker and used to do a lot of trail running, foot races, mountain biking, snowboarding, and I’ve even climbed Mount Whitney!

I have a feeling that there will be a lot of happy tears along the trail (and maybe a few real ones).

Or maybe I’m just a big crybaby.

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