Saturday, April 14, 2012

Hard Things

Trillium, one of the first woodland flowers of spring.
Don't pick the blossoms! They can take up to 7 years to bloom again if they're picked.

Sometimes it's good to do hard things. Sometimes there are rewards that come into our lives no other way.

Today I was the hike leader for a group of 16 individuals (8 young women, 2 young men, 5 adults+me). We hiked 10 miles on the Riverside Trail along the Clackamas River. The weather was beautiful, and the scenery was gorgeous.

The hike was a challenge for most of us. Ten miles! That's around 21,000 steps! For several members of the group, it was their first time to hike that far. For at least a couple members of the group it was their first hike ever.

Now, I wasn't trying to kill anyone off. We were hiking a gentle, scenic river trail, not scrambling up a mountain. And there was an option to bail at 5 miles, which 3 group members did. (With no shame, I might add. Five miles is still a significant distance.)

I was so proud of the group. No one complained whined. No one had to be carried out. When one individual was struggling, others showed compassion and gave encouragement. The faster hikers willingly helped struggling hikers go the distance.

Still, there were a couple of times when I wondered if it was wise to bring novice hikers on a 10-mile hike. And while I'll bet a couple of them are right now wondering the same thing, I would gladly do this again.

Because you don't know if you can do hard things until you do them.
And there are some things you can experience no other way.
Trillium, after all, don't grow along park paths.

(Speaking of hard things makes me think of Sammy's courage and spunk. Click here to help her win a wheelchair-accessible van! You can vote once every day until May 13.)


Katie Lewis said...

Hmm... too true. I better pick up work on my book again. It's been a little too quiet in that department for a little too long.

Haha, and I'm glad to see that young-women-about-to-start-a-hike pictures still look exactly the same. :) (Same sweatshirts, same pre-hike smiles, etc.)

Dorothy said...

I remember taking a big group of girls up Dog about a challenge! Everyone was so SORE the next day, but oh, were they happy they made it to the top! Hard things are good sometimes!

Annemarie said...

Hooray for your courage to try this adventure . . . sounds like it was a rich blessing for the young women involved.

You are a blessing--to them and to me. Happy Friday, friend.

Adam Squires said...

Wow! I missed out. This must have been a great experience, as well as a physically challenging experience. I'm sure your bodies "spoke" to you in one way or another after that. I know mine would not have been happy. Great photo and great group. Congrats on taking up the challenge!

Adam Squires said...
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