A moment by water

Written back in September 2020 during a solo trip to Tobermory

I’ve become the person who stands by Lake Huron in mountain pose, facing the rising sun, as the wind and waves crash against the shore.

The person who takes their hiking shoes and socks off and sits crosslegged with a straight back on the rocks, facing Georgian Bay. Feeling the warmth of the sun on my body, the wind brushing my hair against my face. Water crashing against the rocks. Breathing.

I remember a period of time when I couldn’t cross my legs or go down stairs properly. And now I sit here, legs crossed, back straight. I think of the strength I felt in my legs as I hiked, pushing myself up and further.

Meditating while staring over the water and letting my mind go blank or wander.

The crashing waves take me back to Lake Tekapo and what that moment was – a symbol of my courage and strength. They take me back to Croatia – feeling fully open and letting all the joy in. And to Vietnam, the calm before the storm.

Now I will remember this moment, a getaway for a moment to feel almost like normal but not really.

A moment by water

Starting with the journey

I’ve been thinking about starting this blog for a while now. I start drafts and create plans but then hesitate for too long as I let myself get consumed by self doubt about being vulnerable and about not being good enough. Suddenly, years have passed and I still haven’t started it.

Today, I remembered that the journey is more important and interesting than the destination. And that’s a sentiment that applies to learning and growth as well.

I am a woman of colour in my mid-thirties based in Toronto, Canada. I love travel and outdoor activities and, more often than not, I do both solo. I did not grow up doing outdoor activities (camping, hiking, kayaking, etc) and so there is a lot that I want and need to learn. I want to share those experiences of growth here.

I also really believe in the benefits of nature. Not only is it beautiful and marvellous, I find that it plays an important part in keeping me healthy (both physically and mentally). I want to share my experiences to inspire more individuals to try it and to access these benefits – especially other BIPoC and/or solo individuals who may not see this as an option or know where to start.

I’m determined not to let anything stop me from experiencing life to the fullest – whether that’s having to travel on my own, overcoming injuries, or figuring out what and how to learn about adventuring outdoors. I think I have to take that same determination and apply that to this space here, starting today.

I also acknowledge the privileges I have that allow me to take these adventures and to have the opportunity to share what I learn.

So, here we go. These are my notes and reflections on adventures and the outdoors and, from time to time, their intersection with mental health. Welcome.

Starting with the journey