In March I set a goal for myself: Climb twelve mountains in twelve months, ending with a summit of Mt Rainier without a guide next year.
So I began.
It turns out there's a lot more to it than that. There's no way I'll be prepared to do Rainier by next year if I only do twelve mountains, as I've quickly learned. My goal of twelve mountains has quickly turned into a goal of 52 mountains in 52 weeks.
And so far I've kept up with it.
On Portland: Small Town Girl in a Bigger City
All through your teenage years you feel so very grown up. I remember all the anger and rage and frustration with the world I had during those years. Then I turned 18, started attending college, setting on into the next phase in life. The anger drifted away gradually and I found a whole new set of problems. Any friends I had who weren't 18 yet began to joke about how old I was, it felt like I had stepped over some invisible line that instantly made me "old." In hindsight, I was so very silly during the ages of 18-21. I wanted to be more than I was and didn't know how to find my place because I didn't know exactly what I wanted. My friends in college didn't have jobs and were riding on scholarships or parents paying for everything; they'd only talk about homework and college activities etc. I tried to go this route and couldn't grasp how to study since I had never really learned proper studying techniques in high school, and so I did the best I could.
I was told to get a job and felt indignant about it because my friends didn't have to be working while they were in college, but I got a job anyway. After that it became a battle of finding time for myself, finding time for work, finding time for homework and trying to get myself to class on time. It's a tough thing to learn how to do. I didn't figure it out until my final year of college, at which point I finally felt achieved and was sad to be graduating. College had, at long last, become fun and rewarding.
When I turned 21 I moved out of home. My dear friend had a place and she let me live there. I got my rent paid, went to class, and was fairly irresponsible as I tried to be the person I dreamed 21 year olds are. I had never really fit in anywhere, I was determined to fit in with this age group.
Every year since my 21st I have felt even older and older and farther and farther from my life goals. I want to find a partner, have a small cottage, have a child and work on my art. I graduated college at 24, lost my boyfriend, miscarried, and lost my apartment. Over the past year and a half I've been trying to climb back up but I took so many pit falls and wrong turns trying to find something to make me feel as together as I felt when I was on a path to my life goals.
In an effort to get myself together after I hit rock bottom, I made my initial decision to move to Portland. I had been talking about it for some time before I made the ultimate decision to do it. When I had first decided to move I found myself a boyfriend and put all of my plans on hold. When that plummeted into a burning hellfire and extreme debt issues I felt like there was no time other than the present to get on that move.