After walking UP for hours, I came to a point where I began to see the water. As soon as I had a peek of that sight tears just began to roll down my face. During my walk, I beat myself up so much, my mind kept rewinding all the negative words I had been told for years. After pushing myself to keep going, that I wasn’t a quitter, I saw this sight and realized “I MADE IT, I HAD ACTUALLY JUST WALKED THE ENTIRE WAY FROM ONE TOWN TO THE OTHER”
Still need work on taking a selfie!!
I stopped to take in the view and take in the reality that I had just walked uphill and I didn’t call a cab or take a bus, I WALKED. I was overwhelmed with emotions, after a few seconds I heard footsteps. Two girls stopped behind me, were giggling together and trying to take a selfie. I offered to take a picture for them and they returned the favor. At least I got a better picture of the background…ha-ha.
I tried to take a picture of the sign that announced ARCADE but just a portion came out.
I’m telling you, walking with my backpack and with walking sticks was so new to me, I just couldn’t function like normal people. I didn’t want to stop and take the time to take a decent picture because I felt that all eyes were on me and how clumsy I was. I didn’t want to give anyone enough time to think, “look at that ridiculous woman, trying to take a picture” I know there was no one looking at me, but my mind kept messing with me. I walked up to a hotel that had a café, I walked in tired, hungry and thirsty. Several pilgrims were there already. I went to the bar and ordered my café con leche and a ham and cheese sandwich. When the waitress brought me my café I asked about al albergue or pension nearby, she told me there was one next door but it was closed and would open in a couple of hours. I sat in a corner by the window, again I felt all eyes on me because I was alone. I sat there and took out my journal and focused on what I had just accomplished and the emotions it brought. I got my sandwich, boy talk about being hungry, it was delicious. When I was done eating I went next door to ask about a room at the hotel, I was told it was full already so I went back to the little corner where my things were. I ordered another café con leche and decided to go outside and drink it there.
A young woman asked if she could sit with me and of course I said yes. She was so petite and her backpack was HUGE, we introduced ourselves, her name was Yvonne and she was from Germany. She had been backpacking for a couple of months already but her and her boyfriend decided to meet further along the Camino since he walked a lot faster than her. She had a wooden walking stick, she had stuff wrapped around it that she said some lady had taken her in somewhere and had given her. I thought, how cool is that, I got grapes, hehe. Safe to say that we receive what we need at the right moment. We talked for a little while and we had some similar ways of thinking. I think God places the right people at the right times in your life. I spoke of what I had experienced in the past couple of days, how I felt unworthy of being there because I couldn’t even walk the entire way. I tried to hold back my tears but was unsuccessful. We talked about why we were doing the Camino, what were our reasons and I told her I was trying to find clarity of what my purpose in life was, in what was next for me now that my children were grown. Not sure how the topic of “loving oneself” came up but we both agreed that to receive love, we had to “love ourselves first”. Boy this was a big one for me, I have been working on LOVING MYSELF for a long time.
If you have followed this journey you may have noticed that I did not really have much self-love to begin with. I have been to a lot of spiritual retreats and I thought I had peeled away all the self-doubt, the pain of being told my worth instead of me KNOWING my worth. I stayed in a marriage way too long that it broke my spirit and here is this woman that I have never met in my life talking to me about LOVING MYSELF FIRST!!! Before she got there, I had written some words and I looked at my phone and came across the following:
Every woman who heals herself, Heals all the women before her and Heals all the women Who come after her!!!
I read it to Yvonne and we both got teary eyed. When we are open to receive messages they sure show up. They show up in a way that you WILL know that message is from God. It is HIM wanting you to know that He is there, He’s watching, He’s listening.
Yvonne finished eating and got ready to leave, she told me she had a little song that she did when her body and legs wanted to give out on her and she didn’t care who was watching she sang it to me…” Every little cell on my body is happy, every little cell on my body is well, I’m so glad every little cell in my body is happy and well.” She sang this while tapping her body and her legs up and down. It was cute and she wrote it down in my journal. We didn’t exchange numbers but we exchanged messages, I wrote something on her journal too. She read it and thanked me for the beautiful message I had written (which I don’t remember what I wrote, haha), we hugged each other and she went on her way.
Oh, my feet are tired, Oh, my legs are tired, My soul questioning Why? My mind shouting to Stop and Take the easy way out! My heart yelling out…No, YOU GOT THIS!!!
I spoke with my daughter and her words echoed what my heart was yelling out to me…” Mommy, you got this, My Momma never quits.” I realized at that moment how my children see me, they see me as this strong woman who can do anything. A woman that no matter what life throws at her, she will dust herself off and keep going. But their Mommy puts up a lot of fronts, I may be strong but sometimes I get tired of being strong. I have had projects and ideas in my head but I’ve failed at many things. This is not the time to fail, I need to go on as far as I can.
I set an intention for the following day:
I would not listen to any negative talk, I would put one foot in front of the other, I would avoid glancing at how much further I had to walk, I would just, Keep walking, walking, walking!!
Well I was finally able to check-in to the albergue, it was nice and clean but boy was it an experience…
To be continued…