Mountain Challenges

This week I went snowboarding for the second time in my 26 years. It was a gorgeous day, I had a great set up, an engaging teacher, and a lot of beautiful powder to pad my falls. I did fairly well for about three hours and then I could feel my energy dropping and told Kyle it was probably time to get back to the car before I spend $50 on four granola bars in the "cafe" of the ski lodge. The problem with where were at though is that in order to get back to the car we had to ride a blue "run" down and then take another lift up and then ride another route down. I had done a blue that day already so I felt confident that I could handle one more. If you don't know the difficulty levels of ski runs it goes: Green square , Blue Circle, Black diamond.. 

If I felt weary in the last green run of the day, you can be sure that three minutes into blue #2 had me searching the skies for a helicopter rescue. A new level of frustration had crept through my bones, and as my legs fatigued and head pounded I did what any sensible 20-something would do, I began to cry. Yeah... Not my proudest moment up there at 10,000 ft. But after what felt like my hundredth fall of the day I couldn't hold back the tears. Pushing myself past the point of quick learner to desperate, crying snowboarder wasn't really how I saw my day going. 

As I finally made it down the mountain to the lift that would take me to another run before I could even get close to walking (hiking) to the car, desperation had sunk in and Kyle was trying to understand my squeaky/wheezy words. He essentially made the executive decision to get me off of the mountain as easily as possible, which included riding a different lift and taking a long green run down the mountain to a different parking area where we would somehow get back to our friends and the parked car I was dying to be inside of. 

Even though the afternoon ended kind of terribly, it was probably one of the best parts of my week. It wasn't the weather or the fresh powder, it was the willingness of my favorite person in the world to sit with me in the cold snow as I bitterly bit back my frustration and anger at myself. It was his love and guidance in talking me down from my suicidal/homicidal thoughts. His care for me was my favorite part about my week. My hope for you is that you will wait for the person who is willing to sit on top of a shitty mountain with you, listen to you cry, and help you figure out how in the world you're going to get off without breaking your neck. I hope you will wait for the person who doesn't make you feel ridiculous for losing your cool and who patiently gives you the space to be mad and disappointed in yourself (first for your sub-par snowboarding and secondly for your inability to control your emotions). No relationship is going to look exactly the same and if you are already in a marriage or relationship that doesn't really have patience and kindness, consider first being those things to your partner and see how that goes. If you are finding yourself in need of actual marital help, seek out a counselor; if your partner won't go, go without them first. And feel free to contact me with any questions. Look for kindness in compassion in those you plan to spend a lot of time with, because eventually you will need it from them and they will need it for themselves. 


Amy Shenk1 Comment