Hiking Boots

‘Ugh, I hate hiking,’ I stated out loud as my family prepared to go up the mountain. Our family never did things together as a group let alone hiking, so why were my parents so keen on starting now? And additionally, why were my sisters okay with this? Although I never went hiking, I heard horror stories that were enough to dampen my interest on the activity. Despite my contempt and complains, my parents wearily pushed me along as I prepared for the tedious path that lied ahead.
For the first half of hike, I looked at my feet, barely glancing up to look around me hoping that it would make the hike go quicker. However as we took our break, I realized how much my strategy failed seeing how refreshed my family was as opposed to my panting. After our break, my father told me we didn’t even begin our real ‘hiking’ journey and that what we did before was only a warm up.

Exasperated, I decided for the rest of the journey to cooperate with my family and make the best of our trip. Surprisingly, pointing out the radiance of the trail and actually looking at the surroundings made me appreciate the beauty of hiking and the peace that does exist in a chaotic world. As the mountain became steeper, it became a little more difficult to climb. Numerous times I stumbled, and a couple of times I fell, but with my newfound determination to reach the top and the aid of my family, I was able to continue. There were plenty of times when I wanted to recoil back into my old habits of complaining and just stop hiking, and could have if chosen, but I really wanted to reach my goal. As we approached the top, I noticed how different the aura was from when we started and the calmness that came over me. The worries I had previously, vanished and at that moment, just having my family in such a serene location was all that seemed important to me. After many hours of walking, we finally reached the top, and I was shocked. It was truly a sight to see as a beautiful sunset filled the sky with bold colors, and a sense of peacefulness surrounded me. As I traveled back down the mountain, the images were still fresh in my mind, indelible in my memory.
Although in the beginning I was skeptical to hike with my family, the journey up the mountain opened new realizations to me. Since hiking, I have learned to become open minded to new experiences and to enter them willingly rather than grudgingly. Moving forward requires negative habits to cease, and I’ve learned not to carry those habits because it hinders the learning process rather than build it up. Most importantly however, I’ve understood the value of time spent with family and the importance of their support. It is difficult to climb a mountain given an extra ten pounds carried on your back, but minor obstacles such as those makes one that much stronger, which is applicable to the journey of life. While walking back to the car my mother asked us what we wanted for dinner, and after thinking for a moment I replied, let’s try something new.

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