I might have been a bit quiet on the blog front as life has been seriously manic doing DIY ready for the return home of the boyfriend’s father after a 10-month stint in hospital following a bad stroke.
But slowly things are returning to normal, or as normal as things can be.
Plans, volcanoes and great adventures are afoot.
First up, is a trip to the Auvergne region in France at the start of July. Over three days, a friend and I will take on a couple of sections of the GR400 route in the Cantal, summitting four peaks of Europe’s largest but ancient stratovolcano, which formed 13 million years ago: Puy Mary; Puy Chavaroche; Puy du Rocher; and the highest point at 1,855m Plomb du Cantal.
In addition, we will traverse five other ancient volcano remnants, with the potential to summit three of them if we feel up to it. A particular highlight of the trip will be touching The Nipple of Venus.
Then, after adding these nice four volcanoes to my #40by40 challenge, I’ll jet off to the Portuguese archipelago known as the Azores at the end of August to take on another four volcanic features on the island of Sao Miguel. This will include a walk around the volcanic crater lakes of Sete Cidades, Lagoa das Furnas and Lagoa do Fogo, as well as summiting the 1,103m high Pico da Vara.
Of course, it’s no surprise that in booking both these trips I felt those dreaded feelings of self-doubt and became swamped with negative voices telling me I wasn’t good enough and that I couldn’t do this. For minutes, I sat poised with my finger over the mouse ready to click to confirm the travel payment, while the mental turmoil and anguish pounded through my head.
I almost didn’t click. I almost turned away telling myself I could look at it another day, making up an excuse why now wasn’t the right time. I almost even convinced myself it was ok if I didn’t climb any volcanoes at all.
But I forced myself not to listen to the self-doubt, to realise it was all a lie that the nasty little voices were spinning me – because that’s what it is. There is absolutely no truth in the belief that I’m not good enough – a belief is a belief, it’s not a fact.
Furthermore, I realised, this self-doubt appeared to raise its head when I was contemplating something exciting, adventurous, that was outside my comfort zone, that would challenge me, test me, indicate my potential and what I was capable of.
Hmmm, just perhaps, I pondered, my self-doubt could be seen not as a negative that I couldn’t or wasn’t good enough to do something, but rather as an alert, a beacon that actually showed me a path I should be taking; that actually it was telling me I should darn well book those tickets and climb those volcanoes. Because when has something that challenges you, that forces you to learn about yourself, not been good for you, I reasoned.
And with that I clicked the shiny red payment button on my computer screen.
There’s more – stay tuned for a big upcoming adventure reveal….