The Lesson That I Forgot…

Photo by Chris Datan

It has been a year since I started climbing mountains as a hobby. I didn’t know how it quite all started. All I knew is that It all started with a “bucket list”. Your bucket list originated from a certain desire or a burning  dream. I once dreamed of witnessing the warmth of a lovely sunrise or sunset and watching   the ray of light break in awesome colors as it kisses the horizon. Not anyone could have a view like that! I just saw that moving picture as a remembrance from one of my preceptor in college. From then on I said to myself “I will climb that mountain no matter what happens”. That was the picture of mount Kitanglad as it was embraced by the lovely sunrise.

So, when my high-school friend, ten years later invited me for a major climb I NEVER hesitated and I accepted the challenge with the much anticipation of excitement and fear at the same time.  Thus began my unending quest for hugging boulders, crossing streams, kissing walls and chasing summits.

It is not always an easy journey! I can still vividly remember how I hesitated to summit Mount Apo – the highest mountain of the Philippines. I felt my back in pain and in agony of lifting my backpack while I fought against gravity as I trek every assault. I could hear my every breath and my heart beat pounding so hard. But It didn’t stop there. One of our guides offered to unload me and offered to carry my backpack instead. I felt shame and at the same time compassion for him. We didn’t have any other choice. When you are on top of a mountain, all you could ever think of is anything but essential and survival musings. On a mountain the past didn’t matter anymore nor is your future of great concern. All you can think of is the present moment.  The present is all you’ve got.  Your priorities shift from the petty concerns of daily drills and arguments to just today.  At this time, your timely bills, projects or any requirements or daily humdrum existence will not matter anymore. You will ponder on this one, the moment when you are just a few inches off a cliff. You realize that nothing really matters but your life and the many little blessings that you have got.

A moment will you realize that your journey wouldn’t be complete without those moments of doubt. Those moments of doubt when you have learned to bring on faith and trust in yourself and in a Greater Power- Much greater than this mountain or mightier than all of nature’s power combined!

That moment when you have realized it is not the summit after all. The view is just the bonus of it all! But what matters most is the realization that everything started with a single step. It will all flash in front of your very eyes, how did you started! All the struggles will be worth it in the end of your journey.

You wouldn’t reach your destination without going through bad days or moments of dark clouds, rainy days or being parched under the sun. We all go through these moments. And this will be the time that we shouldn’t forget the lesson, that we will not reach our destination without going  through all seasons. We just have to hold on and keep moving! Remember that dark and rainy days are all part of a beautiful journey!

Thanks for reading. See you tomorrow!

Photography by Chris Datan

Published by Czarie Scarlet

Join me in my journey. This is your journey also. Three decades around the sun I have been compelled to write and share our stories from hiking, mountaineering, trekking, and traveling. I met a lot of people and most of them turned out to be my truest friends. I have come to realize the brutality of traveling and how in every day our life can turn around. I hope to share my adventures and misadventures and live this to tell to my future children and grandchildren. Thank you for joining me.

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