Oftentimes, I cry at endings.

Sometimes, I cry at beginnings, too.

My then boyfriend, now friend, can tell you exactly how I looked when he dropped me and Pacer off to start the Colorado Trail, just a few months after moving to the state and having only done one very, very, short overnight backpacking trip on the AT. He’ll tell you that I looked like I was about to cry, that he could see the fear written around the worried lines around my smile. I actually didn’t know he could read any of my emotions in that moment until he repeated this scene to me a few months ago, because at the time, he knew what he had to do. He remained stoic, not allowing me to linger too long in our embrace, and sent me and Pacer off down the trail.

My tears are usually a mixture of emotions. Sadness, fear, and excitement all wrapped into a ball, moving from my chest to my throat.

The sadness is partially still from the ending that transitioned right into the beginning, but also a grief for the people I can’t take with my on my journey. It’s a love, really. The tears if sadness also mix in with tears from pure fear…a new beginning is stepping into the unknown. And, even while at this point in my life I know all will turn out okay, the fear of the unknown seems to be embedded into my DNA. Its grip has simply loosened. Blending in with the fear then, of course, is the heart of my adventurous soul singing out loud in excitement, for there is surely much beauty to be seen.

So is the cycle of my life. An ending, a beginning, and all the emotions in-between. Beauty in every step.

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