GROWING

In Talkeetna, Alaska with my uncle trying to view Mt. Denali on a cloudy day.

It’s been about two and a half weeks since I’ve been back from Alaska but some how my Alaska adventures feel like a lifetime ago. Looking back now I feel like I lived a completely different life there, like I was a different person somehow. I stepped out of my comfort zone to make friends, hiked strenuous trails knowing bears and other animals were very near by, made the most of exploring a state that is so wild and different than any place I’ve ever been while also staying focused on my career. It’s interesting when you go through new experiences for a prolonged period (31 days in Alaska) that put you so far out of your comfort zone they become normalized. Then in a matter of hours you can come back to the same life, same comfort zone and safe space you had before and look back on that time period and think “Who was I? I felt so strong and brave and vulnerable and now I’m right back to my home in Colorado living the same life I was before”. I know this isn’t true and I know that I’ve changed/grown so much in the last 31 days but being back in my apartment feels so comfortable and natural it’s hard to believe I was living such a completely different life in Alaska two weeks ago.

The last two weeks I’ve spent packing up my apartment in Denver and moving it to a local storage unit. I packed the life I lived for four years into boxes and took just want I needed for the next six months to bring along with me to my next chapter of a more nomadic lifestyle. I was so focused on getting everything together before my move out date that I haven’t really stopped to reflect on the mark my time in Alaska has left on me. Some changes I did notice last week while I was in a CycleBar class are that:

  • I feel strong. All the hiking I did has made me a stronger cycler and I have an increased fitness level coming back. I also feel stronger mentally. I want to continue getting out of my comfort zone and challenging myself. I feel less things scare me now that would have before and I’m proud of that growth.
  • I also feel grateful. I’m grateful for the opportunity to have spent time in Alaska. I’m grateful for my health and I’m extra grateful for the love and support from my friends, family, and boyfriend to pursue this temporary lifestyle. I’ve been feeling an overwhelming sense of gratitude every day for this life that is mine and I never want to take that for granted.
  • The last thing I’ve been feeling is a little sad. With all big bittersweet changes, I seem to morn what once was before I accept and feel comfortable with what is. I loved my time in my cute apartment living with my best friend for four years, going to CycleBar and local coffee shops, drinking wine and laying by the pool. We had a blast and I think I’m going to miss living with my perfectly positive, fun loving, huge heart of a roomie most of all. But this sadness leads me back to gratitude for the time spent together and the memories we will continue to make in the future.

So, I’m adjusting again to this new normal and heading in to the next adventure of nomadism. I’m excited, I’m nervous, I’m uncomfortable and I know I’ll continue to grow through this next chapter. That’s what life’s about, isn’t it?

Until the next tale… Happy trails.

-Hannah

Back hiking in the Rocky Mountains.

3 thoughts on “GROWING

  1. You have stepped out of your comfort zone but will find a different trail to follow. You are amazing and always know the most important people in your life will always follow you anywhere you go in your life. I love it that you are so brave to explore the world and step out of your comfort zone to live your life to the fullest.

    Liked by 2 people

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