Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Lessons at 40 ft.

Chris and I are high school sponsors at our church this year.  It's a fun group of students...mostly girls at the moment.  This past weekend we went on retreat with them and had a blast.  As usual, I walked away having learned so much about myself.

We went to an adventure camp.  I was totally excited about this before going.  Rock wall climbing and a high ropes course. ..two things I've never done but have always wanted to do.

We did the ropes course first.

Here I am all suited up and ready to go.  Still feeling quite brave with my feet planted firmly on the ground.

Well, I climbed up the ladder, got to the top and had to transfer off of the belay onto the bunny ears.  Not feeling so brave anymore.  Chris was already up there, and so he came and the two of us set off together.

I got across the bridge, and to the landing on the other side, but couldn't handle waiting up there while the people ahead of us cleared the way.  So I walked back across the bridge and climbed down.  When I got to the bottom, Stephanie, one of the leaders said to me "You can't let him be your crutch."  Ugh...those words pierced right through to my heart.  I sat and watched  the students complete the course and just hung on those words.  I knew I had to go back up.

As I got ready to go up Stephanie said to me "It's facts over feelings."  Again, just the words I needed.  I disclosed to you my readers last week that I struggle with Panic Disorder.  When I have a panic attack I am operating in feeling and no facts.  So this statement was huge for me.

 Here I am crossing it by myself.

At the end of this bridge is a narrow walkway which is where I quit before.  I thought that the people in front of me were far enough ahead that I wouldn't get stuck waiting there again, but alas...the girl in the front was taking her time...

...so I waited.

Here's where it got tough for me.  One of the components of panic disorder is the feeling of needing to flee.  I experience this feeling in grocery stores, at traffic lights and most recently at Michael's the day I posted about last week.  I absolutely hate the feeling of "needing" to go but not begin able to.  Clearly I was stuck on the bridge.  There was no quick or easy down.  I had no choice but to sit in my discomfort.

Eventually we got moving again.  Strangely at this point walking across itty-bitty wires seemed easy compared to the waiting I had just completed.  After all...I was at least moving.

I made it across the leap of faith and through the cargo net.

and here I am at the end!  Yay!!

So the take away...facts over feelings.  If it works at 40 feet in the air, it's got to work in the Michael's check out line...right?!

The next day we rock climbed.  This was not nearly as life changing but really fun and challenging.
A few pictures for your viewing pleasure.

P.S. - so totally proud that after two kids that's me climbing the wall!

So a great weekend.  I love when God uses complete strangers to breathe words into our lives.


  1. I am proud of you for going back up and finishing the course. Good job!

  2. Girl, my chest tensed up just reading this! Congrats to you, MB!!!

  3. I'm proud of you. For doing this, and for sharing it with us. xoxox

  4. You are one brave woman! WooHoo! Congratulations...Hugs,