I actually wrote this a few years ago. However, every now and then I like to go back and read it during those times when I'm starting to feel settled in my ways. This trip is what inspired the Island Paradise candle. As you read this, I hope that you are able to think about your own comfort zones and what you can do yo push through.
We all have a comfort zone. I know I do. Doing something outside of my cozy little comfort zone gives me ANXIETY! So, when a good friend of mine invited me to Jamaica, I panicked. After all, I am a mother of 2 teenagers, and they need me. Well, they don't need me the way that I think they do, but still. However, after talking with a few close friends and my sisters, they made me realize that I deserved this trip and that if I didn't go they would beat me up! So here is where I enter the unfamiliar territory of the UN-COMFORT ZONE.
June 23, 2017, I visited Dunn's River Falls in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, and what an experience! Arriving at the park I had no preconceived notion regarding what to expect. Once inside, you have to walk what seems like a million steps just to get to the beach, to start the climb of the 180 ft. high, 600 ft. long waterfall. The steps are deep and slippery. Once you get the bottom, there lies one of the most beautiful beaches I've ever seen. I don't think I have ever seen water so blue, and the sky so clear, it was perfection! As we are all standing there in awe of one of God's creations, the tour guides asked us to hold hands as we start our journey. Starting the climb was extremely intimidating. Water is rushing at you so hard and fast! I wanted to quit 10 feet into the excursion. Immediately, I had thoughts about what if I fall? What if I don't make it? What if the person in front of me lets my hand go? Then I heard something say "what if you make it to the top?" At that point, I decided that I was going all the way. So as we are climbing the rocks, water rushing at us like people run to Best Buy on Black Friday to buy one of ten 50 inch flat-screen televisions on sale for $100, but I digress. Now, this experience blew my mind at how profound it was. So as we are climbing and holding hands of the person in front of us and behind us, I realize that this is making it extremely difficult for me to keep going. I realize that I have to let go. I can't follow the exact steps of the person in front because those were her steps were for her. The person behind me was moving to slow and afraid to move, so I chose to let go, to continue the journey. About halfway up my foot slips and is caught between two rocks, I get myself up and keep moving. The thought of quitting crossed my mind several times. But, I asked myself what would happen once I made it to the top? How would I feel? I didn't 't want to rob myself of that opportunity. With that being said I got out of my head and enjoyed the amazing scenery. I'm not sure how long it took me to reach the top but that doesn't matter. All that matters is that I got there.
There is something about the feeling of completing something that you want to do. I almost let fear paralyze me and cheat me out of an amazing experience. When I think back about that day, it makes me realize the limits that I have put on myself, that keep me from reaching my full potential. hold us back from reaching our full potential. This experience also made me realize that it's ok to let go of things or people who will hold you back.
Although, I still have moments where I struggle to do things that are outside of my norm. I continue to push myself (sometimes with the help of others) past my comfort zone!