For Those Who Have Gone Before Me

Nana,
I climbed Longs Peak yesterday. I know that if you were here you would have held tightly to my legs begging me not to go and then would have had diarrhea the whole time I was up there. (Momma pulled a you and almost sent loads of articles about people dying and simultaneously lectured me while reminding me to remember ever minute detail about it). BUT I hope you’d be proud. Because at the beginning of the summer I didn’t think I was the kind of person who could go climb crazy mountains like this one, but that’s the precise reason why I set the goal to do so.
I wasn’t excited three days ago and almost didn’t summit because I didn’t see the point; my legs hurt, my excitement wasn’t there, my head hurt from lack of water and hitting it on a rock, and I’m pretty sure I was cursing the whole way. Why did I choose this mountain as THE ONE to climb? I failed myself and my friends more than once on the way up and most definitely broke a promise to a friend back home that I would turn around if my legs were hurting at all. It wasn’t what I expected and I definitely didn’t do as well as I expected to.
I was humbled by this mountain and this summer. I’ve been stripped down to the bare minimum, haven’t given my best, and have failed plenty. I’m not always excited about my daily tasks, I’m not quite ready to go back to school, and I’ve been run over by a truck five times over as I am learning what deep end trust looks like with God. I’m sure, if you were here, you’d wrap me in your arms and say something about me being the most lovely of women you’ve ever met and how lucky you are to be my Nana. But you’re not and each time I walk into your home I’m met with silence.
I have to say goodbye soon; to the mountains, to the friends, to the cliffs of Longs Peak, to your home, and to you. I still have so many questions and I still feel so far from finished. This wasn’t what I expected, but I know one day I’ll be able to say that it was everything I needed. I am beyond thankful for your home and the healing it started to bring, the memories it now holds, and the comfort it gave. I’m thankful for Longs Peak and it teaching me that I’ll never be able to summit without crazy faith that God will pull me through and hold the storms back, for humbling me even more so, and reminding me that I need the community around me to encourage and lead the way when I can’t and don’t want to do so.
So here we are. End of the summer is looming and I still miss you loads. I’m weary of this year and leading girls when I don’t feel as if I have anything to give. I conquered a mountain that I’d never thought I could or would climb. I have been humbled, but am so excited for God to fill in the spaces I lack. And I’ve cried a lot, but have had the most wonderful adventures this summer. I wish you could have seen it all.
I love you always. Until I see you again,
Emma

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