It’s one thing to inspire a friend that you’ve known for a long time and know their likes/dislikes. It’s another thing to be inspiring to total strangers!

Inspiring Walkers

Last year I was tagged on instagram by this lovely young lady.

inspiring others to walk

#timetowalk#elcaminodesantiago#pilgrim#500miles#soblessed#inspiredby @andrawatkins and @cherylstrayed

4 weeks later she posted this picture:

she walked the whole way. inspiring

800km#camino#wedidit#catherdral#nowletswalktotheocean#finisterre

According to the the pictures she posted in between things were not always easy, but she finished her 800 km walk. Her journey – that I helped inspire –  inspires me.

Inspiring Bikers

biked the Natchez Trace. inspiring others

Reader Highlight: Ben Rivers biked past me on the Natchez Trace in 2014 then came to meet me at this event.

In February I received this message:

We are a group of 10 cyclists who are planning to travel the Natchez trace from Natchez Mississippi to Nashville Tennessee. I have loved your book. It is insightful, humorous to the point of hilarity, and yet very down to earth.
Thank you for the inspiration.
Paul Detrisac

And then in April:

What a hidden Gem the Natchez Trace is. We completed our bike ride without a flat among `10 bikers, quite a testament to the quality of pavement. I thought of your journey frequently during our trek and was inspired to move on. Before I left I read your book about Merry and Emmaline ” To live forever” What a masterpiece of weaving, past, present and future, into an exciting novel. I would like to complement you on your writing. Have a great year.
Paul Detrisac

Inspiration is around every corner. So go for a walk!

Who inspires you? Or who have you inspired? I’d love to hear from you in the comments here or we can connect on social media. The links to my accounts are at the top right of this page.

Don't Wait For Other People

“Don’t wait for other people to make special things happen. Create your own memories.” – Heidi Klum

 

I remember milepost 120.

MTM left me on a deserted parkway, fifteen miles north of Jackson, Mississippi. As I took the first steps of my second week, he drove east, twelve hours to resume a lonesome life at home.

I watched his car merge with the scenery, listened for the echo of his engine long after he was gone. Until my sobs obliterated it.

I missed him.
I missed our life.

What had I done? I heeded my soul’s whisper: Don’t wait. I undertook a stupidstupidstupid walk I couldn’t imagine finishing. I rubbed my temples and begged my migraine to fell me. I wanted to go home.

During my worst heartsickness, I stopped and made this video:

And I just watched it and cried all over again.

Almost two years later, I watch myself and marvel at a broken woman who never showed the true depth of her desperation. How I collapsed on that curb and sobbed for ten minutes and couldn’t force my limbs to straighten when I decided to plod onward. A memory I’ll always cherish almost died that day.

Life doesn’t promise us easy memories. Our most memorable events, the things we truly savor, usually involve some pain with a side of agony. Don’t wait for order. Don’t settle for ease. Don’t stop when everything screams, “Impossible!” Watch me in this video and know my glee at where I am today.

Create your own memories, snippets of life you’ll be proud to claim as you swim through tears. You won’t be sorry.

——————–

Photograph Credit: Andra Watkins

This is part of a series of pictures about making memories. If you liked the story why not share it with your friends? Let’s meet on Facebook or Twitter. If you prefer pictures you will surely like my Instagram. I’ve collected inspirational things and more on Pinterest! Any comments? Write them below!

I don’t know what you’re going through life doing if you’re not really trying to collect some really great memories. ~ Channing Tatum

 

Lives are a representation of the yearning to collect. A person isn’t just bone and muscle, blood and sinew. Human beings are biological recording devices, branding everything we experience and storing it within.

If we could invent a machine to replay the database of our gray matter, we might attain omniscient recall. Perhaps we could recount what really happened at the scene of that car accident or describe the details of a face glimpsed during a robbery or dissect that final, longing look or remember our promises to take out the trash.

As with anything we collect, our memories play favorites. And favor instances we’d like to forget.

Who knows why the first thing I remember is being eighteen months old? I can see the lights go out as my mother covered me with warm clothes from the dryer. I feel the soft safety of my cocoon, and I hear my shrieking laughter as I spring from the pile’s center and spew garments everywhere.

Or why I remember running into the barren cornfield and cutting my bare feet on the stumps.

Or how I can still feel the black-and-white spotted coat of my pet cow Boo.

Or why I see myself squatting over a mole hole and peeing, because going inside meant walking too far.

Or where I hid when I spilled unset ice trays from the freezer and listened to Mom rant about who could’ve left water all over the kitchen floor.

Or what my dog’s food tasted like.

All memories I collected as a toddler, snatches of time I can’t seem to forget.

And that’s what makes my collection of memories grand: It’s eclectic and bizarre and weird and unexplainable. I’m grateful for the moments that rise to the top.

———————

Photograph Credit: Andra Watkins

This is part of a series of pictures about making memories. If you liked the story why not share it with your friends? Let’s meet on Facebook or Twitter. If you prefer pictures you will surely like my Instagram. I’ve collected inspirational things and more on Pinterest! Any comments? Write them below!