Missions, Resolutions and Realities

My career has gotten in the way of my life. My desire to be successful has resulted in very little “me” time. I admit, it seems it is working. I keep telling myself that I only have to hold out a few more years until I’m in my comfort zone, but it has meant that in the last year, I have had one vacation that lasted longer than a week, and it’s the one I’m on right now.

When I lived in Beachburg, I was blessed to share my home with some really great people: Jeremy, a paddler never intimidated by the “pro” circuit; John, a whitewater icon, bringing his business back to Canada and looking for the perfect place to call home; and Billy and Carly, an amazing couple looking to get back on their feet and establish a base for their growing family.  They weren’t the only ones – other amazing travellers from around the world have come and gone and left an impression in my life.

Since then I have travelled the world – southwest Asia, Africa, Iceland, Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Mexico, Europe….   and despite whatever I’m doing, or where I am, the fond memories of my time in Beachburg keep coming back.

My husband wants to see what this whitewater kayaking “hype” is all about.  I have taught others to paddle, and over the years helped many develop or reignite their passion for paddling, but there is no way on God’s green earth that I am going to teach him.  One thing I have learned over the years, and a common theme in the whitewater community is: never teach your significant other to paddle!

So I come back to Beachburg.  Only one person I know would be able to get my husband excited about paddling, and ensure that he has all the skills to do so.  In fact, I would argue that he would probably become a better paddler than me (although that’s not really saying much).  It’s Billy Harris.  Billy just opened up to his friends and followers in his blog with a confession about fear and internal sabotage.  I encourage you to read it, it is honest, open and I am positive that we have all “been there” at one point or another in our lives.  Even the best of us experience some setbacks in their goals and dreams – and if they can be honest with themselves and attack those setbacks, then so can every one of us.  Whether it be with work, paddling, diet, fitness, lifestyle, relationships, the key is to recognize what has happened, open your mind to the change needed and recreate the life you have always wanted.

I am hoping that I will be able to see Billy and Carly again this spring, and hoping that he is back on the water full-force for two reasons.  1) I don’t believe Billy should ever be off the water (I recall in 2005 watching Billy in one of Ben Aylesworth’s grand whitewater productions and immediately being drawn to that passion and excitement about paddling and wanting to be just like that); and 2) so he can continue to share his passion for paddling with my husband and others around the world who would be half the paddler having never met him.

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