INSPIRING OUTDOOR CONNECTIONS

HOW CLIMBING RELIEVED MY FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN (JOURNAL)

from Girls Gone Roadie, 2018, February 1 /

#GIRLSGONEROADIE STORY, shared by ALLISON FORTUNA

Alison Fortuna - Australia

EMBRACING THE UNKNOWN

As my 1-year mark in Australia creeps up on me, all my adventures are flying before my eyes. I have so much to be grateful for just from this last year.

I remember standing inside the Sydney Airport; two heavy backpacks weighing me down and one large roller suitcase behind me. I sat watching the rain pour down outside, semi-paralyzed by fear as I waited for my Airbnb to be prepared. I tried my best to remain calm and remind myself that I am in the right place, I am closer to myself than I ever have been. That this is what guided me here.

2017 brought me adventure, friendships, alone time, love, countless jobs, travel, yoga and confronting a lot of demons I never wanted to face. Every day felt as though I was on a roller coaster. Most days sitting at the top, excited, nervous and ready for the drop. This made me wonder:

why I’m so scared of the drop in everyday life

It’s like the feeling I get while on a roller coaster – once it’s over I’m filled with excitement. I felt this way before in the past year during my my first-time outdoor rock climbing off of Mount York. Abseiling down from the top and most of the way down I was shaking and barely able to breathe. Just taking that first step to getting onto the side of the cliff seemed impossible. Every primal fear hormone took over my body, triggering signals saying,
“This is not right!”
“We do not hang off of cliffs!”
“DEATH!!!”

My partner kindly calmed me, explaining that it’s completely natural for our bodies to be reacting this way. That through breathing, it will calm down. I slowly made my way down the cliff, laughing at myself since I hadn’t even started climbing yet. My hands were frozen, my body already sore from being so tense with anxiety. I safely made it to the ground. I survived. Once I reached the bottom, I was excited and ready to try again.

I discovered that my body still in shock and weak and tired just from hanging on a rope, I was barely able to climb. But I still gave it a go and made some incredible memories and left wondering why I’ve let fear consume me so deeply when I know I always come out alive.  

Now here I am again, filled with fear, living in a new area of Sydney, with a boyfriend for the first time in my life, trying to figure out how am I going to stay longer and, when I do figure it out, where will the money appear from to pay for all the legal requirements. But each day, working through yoga and meditation, I keep getting closer and closer to myself. I keep breaking through to parts of me I didn’t know existed and these breakthroughs connect me closer to the rhythm of the Earth. I tell myself on a daily basis that as long as I am in tune with that rhythm, everything will be okay.

I’ve asked the Ancestors to grant me permission to stay on this land. There is still so much I would like to explore and learn. It’s closer travel distance to all of my top bucket list countries; Japan, India, New Zealand, to name a few. I’ve only spent a few days in the “real” Australia and would like to connect more to the land and the stories it holds. My yoga teacher, Eileen Hall, brings me closer and closer to God each day, and I am not sure how she does it but it happens and I surrender to her. I feel as though this place has always been home. I’m not ready to leave yet. I am still becoming, still growing, still constantly evolving.

I love looking back at one-year marks to see how far I’ve come and how much has changed in what seems like such a short time. I feel excited to see what my story develops into.  I’ve never been so unsure of my future as I am right now. Within months I could have a steady home and a stable life here in Australia, or be packing my bags to move elsewhere (somewhere also unknown).  

My mind swirls with questions from the unveiling of some new unknowns. It settled on the words of Rainer Maria Rilke,  

 

“I would like to beg you, dear Sir, as well as I can, to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer”.

 

 

xx,

Allison

content provided compliments of Alison Fortuna, Images of Alison by Josh Caple, edited by Gabaccia

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