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AliciaAH's Response to Bill's Challenge: Woman on the Mountaintop.
I've never climbed a mountain but I can only imagine being on top of one, to take in the magnificent view that I've only seen in magazines and on television. Mountains remind me of life, how grand, intimating, scary but how amazing they can be. Even with the challenges they offer us, we learn to reach our highest potential with them. Personally I've had little exposure with mountains but with the small experiences I've had, I learned lessons.
My first experience with mountains was when I lived in Puerto Rico as a child. I remember looking down from a cliff, it felt like a dream. I lived with my grandparents in a town called Cayey where it's surrounded by mountains. One mountain is called Las Tetas de Cayey, translated the Breasts of Cayey. My grandparents lived in the Polvorin area of Cayey, where it was located up on hills. Every time I looked out my window I'd see the town below and felt close to the sky. On the hill the air was cool at night, it was illuminated by bright stars from up above and by the town's lights from below. It was always magical.
Mountains Inspires Us, To Push Ourselves
I went on vacation to the Poconos, we visited Camel-beach Mountain Waterpark. I went on the Sullivan Sky Ride where you sit on a four passenger chairlift and rode up to the peak of Camelback Mountain. It was a beautiful view of the mountains but I was shaken-ed by the height. I do have a fear of heights considering that I once lived on a hill and surrounded by mountains in Puerto Rico. The moment I sat on the chairlift and felt it rise high and saw the tree tops, I started to panic. My heart pounded against my chest and I felt lightheaded. However I took a deep breath and realized the beautiful scenery of the Poconos mountains, the sky, the trees and green grounds, it was freedom. For me It represented confronting life's challenges even if I was petrified I still continued and had the chance to enjoy the view which melted my fears away. Moreover, growing up in Cayey P.R. and climbing up those hills, I always felt a sense of accomplishments every time I reached the top. Being a child at that time, with little legs climbing up those hills was very challenging. Even climbing down the hill wasn't easy because I'd feel gravity pull me down and my legs couldn't keep up with it's force and I'd fear tripping and falling down the hills. When I climbed up those hills my legs would burn and it was always hot outside therefore I'd pace myself but once I'd turn onto my street where the ground leveled out, it was a relief. Those were my experiences with mountains and hills. Therefore I can only imagine climbing up a mountain, reaching the top, taking in the view and feeling accomplished. Mountains and hills are a lot like life's challenges because we have to push ourselves through the pain, fears and harsh conditions but the pay off is so worth it.
Life is our mountain and we all start at the bottom. However, we all have the potential to reach the top. Every mountain is different and every climber is different therefore every experience will be unique. No matter what, it's going to be challenging because life is supposed to be challenging, in order for us to grow. Therefore you're going to have to put your sweat, tears, blood and soul into it, but know that when you finally reach the top, that aha moment you've been waiting for, will be there to greet you. The reward will be embracing the beauty of a new self. Life will reward you with spiritual growth, awareness,courage, peace and love. We all have our inner compass therefore we will take our own paths and steps, some people will climb west and others will climb east but north is the aim. There will be times in our lives that we might have to take a step back and we have to recalculate our steps. However, it's ok because setbacks are apart of the journey and as long as our goal remains to reach the top we're in good hands of the Divine who will always be there.
When I was little those hills were my mountains and reaching the top was my goal. When I did reach the top, I could see the town below and for me that was amazing. I felt instant relief, I could breath easier, I felt lighter because I was closer to the sky and home. I thanked my determination and my strong little legs, a life lesson I remind myself today.
Looking at the picture Bill Holland took of his wife on top of the mountain was inspiring. When I looked at it I couldn't see myself accomplishing anything like that. However it made me reflect and I started remembering my own experiences and I realized I've had similar experiences, whether physically or mentally it was always spiritually. I have climbed my own mountains in life. At the age of 5, I felt like that woman on top of the mountain and I feel today every time I overcome my Life Mountains. Mountains can feel intimating but they remind us that we are strong and powerful just like them.