Camino update 3: Trust

This was originally posted on a year ago today. 

Well this is my 3rd rest day and am typing this from a room in Leon. Ok so trust! Hmm this was an interesting insight for me maybe from day 1 on the walk from St Jean Pied de Port to Burguete but especially on days 2 and 3 into Zubiri and Pamplona. Now, people who know me will be wondering about this trust insight as I’m normally a trusting person in both situations and people which is why this also caught me off guard.

I can honestly say I still am trusting but I’ve learnt more trust and that’s in my own body. You see in 2012 when I was in Cameroon, I decided with a friend to climb Mont Cameroun and I ended up falling 3 times and each time hurting my left knee more and more. Since then I’ve noticed how hesitant I am when it comes to taking the first step to walk down somewhere. This plagued me throughout Nepal and my walks in St Helena. I always knew I was hesitant but also knew why and just carried on explaining to friends I walked with why I would be slow on descents.

Here I always trust that I’ll find my way, that even when it’s only me and my shadow walking a stretch that I’ll either come across a sign which reassures me I’m on the Camino path or I’ll suddenly see pilgrims ahead or behind me.

I trust without a doubt that I will know friendship and kindness along the way from fellow pilgrims and the Spanish who always want to help you.

To be honest I’ve stopped believing the signs which indicate how many kms are left to our destination that day or to Santiago as they always seem to change. Now we pilgrims laugh at them when we see them and just accept there is a lesson to be learnt from their lies and just carry on walking .

So with all this trust for things around me, why did I not trust my body. Well, that had to change and as I type this post I’m glad to say I believe it has changed. There is a reason there are no photos of the descents we have had to do and that’s because they were too scary for me to even think of taking a photo or the rain meant my camera and phone had to stay covered.

Many times walking down the descents, I was hesitant and let’s be honest here really scared of slipping on the wet surface or falling. Some pilgrims walked down past me checking I was ok whilst they also struggled and others strolled down as if there was no problem at all on the descent or surface. Oh how I envied them!

So I started having words with myself, gentle words and supportive words as if I was talking to a good friend. I reassured myself that although this was scary, I could do it and just look at what I had done so far. Then I started telling myself “I trust you to get me down here safely”, “you can do this” and ” keep going you’re doing great”. Well of course my body got me down along with my mind as they are both strong and even more so when you trust them.

So when I came upon this descent which fellow pilgrims were telling me was hard and steep, I stopped at the top with other pilgrims content in taking our time and making sure we got down safely. Well readers, I did it! I didn’t feel the usual fear I have when I notice a steep or difficult descent coming up. No, I went for it the trust already in me knowing my body wouldn’t let me down.

This new found trust has come in handy as once we leave Leon, we enter the mountain walks with steep inclines and descents. Guess what accompanies these steep descents, yes you’ve guessed it, rain and a threat of snow too! Lovely but hey it’s ok as I know my body and mind will get me through. I TRUST myself!

Buen Camino!

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