In the more formidable challenges of my life, I have solely relied on myself. I trust myself to get through it, to tough it out, to push myself beyond my limits without the help of others.
I always think I can do it…I don’t need anyone and I don’t want to trust anyone.
While climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, trust in strangers became inevitable. Not only trust but receiving help gracefully. Grace is not necessarily my strong suit.
Starting on day two of the climb, the effects of altitude sickness crept in. I was not aware of it.
One of the guides offered to take my back pack. My response was “hell no!” If I decided to climb I damn well was going to carry my own back pack!
I was asked again, and my response was the same.
Finally as the day wore on I agreed to allow someone to carry my pack.
The help was not offered to belittle me; it was offered to help me. The guides wanted to do everything they could to help me summit, which in this case they saw days prior to the summit attempt that I would need help now…which would help me later.
It was only after that day, resting in my tent did I realize this. And every day after I let the guides carry my pack. Not only that, my water was in my pack so at every stop I teased them by calling them “Papi” (daddy) and “chupi chupi” (which is Spanish for “to suck”), meaning to suck on my water hose.
There were times where I was so tired at the end of the day that I would fall into my tent and someone would even come and take my boots off for me. The help in something as simple as unlacing my boots was accepted with gratitude.
It actually got me to thinking about other aspects of my life and when I have turned help away. Now I will second guess the offer and see if perhaps the help can be graciously accepted and help me to achieve my goals easier rather than struggle on my own.