One of the things I intended to do while Samaritan was hiking was write a guest blog post. A number of times while he was gone I would wake up in the middle of the night and start writing in my head. But in the light of day, there were many things to do at the office…at home, I would find chores to keep me occupied. I never got around to putting words to paper or more accurately, words to Word. I now believe I avoided writing because my emotions were too raw and close to the edge during that timeframe. In true Gemini style, I hid under the covers rather than deal with all of the truths happening around me. Life as I knew it was changing fast – too fast. My husband was off hiking as my job was winding down and I would have all this “free time” sprawling in front of me. It was hard to keep a smile on my face when all I wanted to do was cry at the perceived loss of my identity; it was hard to stay positive with Samaritan when all I wanted was for him to be next to me. So I concentrated on “busy” work rather than dealing with my emotions. Looking back on it now, because we learned before Samaritan left for his hike that my job was ending in early June, we should have taken the time to really talk through if this was the right time for his hike. Perhaps if we had put off his hike to next year he could have trained more and would have avoided the Achilles issues. Shoulda, coulda, woulda…didn’t.
Flash forward to now. Samaritan has been home from the trail for almost 2 full months. It really is wonderful having him home although with each passing day – at least for me – his trail experience seems farther and farther away. I’m not sure if Samaritan feels the same but I’ve noticed he has an easier time talking about his experiences now than he did upon his return in June. I do know he’s happy he hiked for as long as he did. We both know that he will continue the journey – not as a thru-hiker but he will be a 2,000-miler. We’ve had a number of talks about it and I’m certain he will post his own thoughts on how he plans to accomplish it.
Since he’s been back we have: bought a truck, gone camping, attended Summerfest to see Berlin and Tom Petty, saw Dennis DeYoung perform The Grand Illusion in its entirety, spent time with family and friends, eaten some great food at home and restaurants, listened to albums, survived the flooding (no damage for us thank goodness), adopted a kitten and spent lots of quality time together. Samaritan has even joined in on the fun of cleaning and purging closets! All of these adventures are what we needed when we realized his hike was over on June 4th. And we’re not done yet! There are more week-long camping trips to come as well as a trip to LA in September to see the final leg of Tom Petty’s tour where Lucinda Williams will open. We have also built in time at Yosemite National Park (short hikes only) and Napa Valley (yum, wine) as part of that trip. The great thing is we used our frequent flyer miles which means the money we saved on flights can be spent on more wine tastings and wine! When that adventure is over, it will be time for me to buckle down to seriously begin my job search. Until then, we are taking advantage and enjoying the time we have together making memories!
Thank you all for your support of Samaritan before, during and after his hike. We truly appreciated hearing and reading your comments. Please continue to send positive thoughts and prayers for his Achilles to heal/strengthen and for me in my job search. We are BLESSED!