We face things. We set goals. We strive for more. What would we like to hear from the people close to us?
There comes a time when even the most solitary human needs to be encouraged or know that he is being thought of by others. Depending on the moment and the set goal, each of us has different things we would like or need to hear. Those words often don’t match the words that come from the mouths of our loved ones.
I set a goal two years ago. I went through all the steps, encouragements, rationalizing my decision. I went through the good and the bad of it. What I needed to hear in the beginning is almost the opposite of what I would like to hear now.
I am a loner. Having people in my life takes a lot of energy, and a lot of consideration for someone else’s feelings but my own. It takes time to build a solid relationship, to give away my trust, to be confident that others do the same. Still, once in a while I need another human perspective, some kind of hand on my shoulder that my ‘loner’ state is accepted, respected and understood.
When ‘Walk into my story’ was just an idea, more than anything I wanted the people close to me to believe in it, to hear that somehow, I can make this journey, that nothing can stop me, that I am strong enough. To walk 1300 kilometers was not an adventure or some extreme challenge I was embarking on; it was a self-exploration and as I realize more and more, accepting my ‘loner’ condition fully.
Two years came and went, the departing date is almost around the corner, and I have felt everything I needed to feel by now: fear, excitement, panic, adrenaline rush, confidence, despair, disappointment, sadness, and pure joy; sometimes all at the same time.
In the beginning, the words of encouragement of those around me helped. Other times they placed me in a panic state of ‘what if I let everyone down?’ I’ve heard the word ‘adventure’ so many times that often I wondered if I am not one of those people who is searching for an adrenaline rush. I knew I wasn’t. I had always come back to my initial purpose, shut out anything that could challenge it and kept only the valuable insights.
And now? When I surpassed the need to hear: ‘You can do this!’, ‘You are strong!’, ‘You’ve got this!’? What now?
Now I would like for the encouragements to stop. I would love to hear someone make a plan for when I come back; for someone to set a date, a place and a time to meet me for a cappuccino when I am back at home base. I would love for someone to say: ‘Hey, coffee soon? I have an amazing story to tell you!’
Because after two years of everything circling around me, I am tired to answer questions and to tell stories about my training. I want to hear about you, them, about what is happening into your lives; what are your goals set for the near future.
I know I have this. I know I can do it and most of all I now have the confidence to not doubt my journey, my reasons, my goal. Because there are moments when you need a hand on your shoulder, others when you want to be held in silence without any explanations, and moments when you need to be filled with someone else’s joy.
Relationships are a balanced exchange. You need words to keep that balance in place. And even if the words you are longing to hear fail to come out of your loved one’s mouths, take the hand on the shoulder, take the ‘You have this!’ that is offered to you for the hundred time, take their smiles and their concerns. Because the exchange can never happen unless you allow it and accept it. Use your words.