weareallpilgrims

Camino de Santiago

Month: July, 2017

Finding A Way With Laughter

13xCamino Tom sore feet

Terri and I recently watched an old 1998 movie, called “Patch Adams” with Robin Williams. The movie is based on the true story of a heroic man, Hunter Patch Adams, determined to become a medical doctor because he enjoys helping people. He ventures where no doctor had ventured before, using humour and pathos.

My interest in the movie comes from a strategy I am using to help me deal with the chronic pain of a torn calf muscle and blood clots in my leg (I injured myself dancing at a wedding, see video link below for a good laugh).  As I wrote recent blog, the power of smiling/laughter is can reduce pain! Patch Adams is about a man that believed this was a real potential strategy to helping those in pain.

I am also trying to find my way through this journey to recovery (expected to be 3 to 6 months). Pain is my companion right now and I have made the choice that I will learn to live with it the best I can using laughter to help me along the way. I certainly saw my dear, wife, Terri, live this “path of pain” on our Camino walk. She walked for 3 weeks with what ended up being three stress fractures in her ankle! Pain was her constant companion everyday for weeks. I figured it was my time to walk the “pain path” as well.

There are no guarantees in life and we will face painful times. I choose to accept this and not run away from it. Because I can not run from the pain through the use of pain medication, it is more in my face but I can make the choice this will not get me down. I can chose to live with pain. I chose to laugh with it. I chose to walk with it and to sense it is apart of my life for now.

There were a number of pilgrims that we walked the Camino with that walked everyday in pain (often with multiple blisters). Yet they chose to stay on the path and walk with the pain. It focuses one that is for sure. My head is clear and I accept this path with a heavy dose of laughter along they way!

Blessings and all  good,

John

P.S Here is the video of me tearing my left calf muscle which I then later aggravated by a walk on beach in bare feet! The crazy dance.

 Photograph of the Week

Forest Deep

This image was taken on the last day of our Camino de Santiago walk on the way into Santiago. I felt this image reflects a bit of the drama of walking the Camino. It is a long way to walk and often filled with pain along the way.

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Walk The Way of Peace


“This is the way of peace: Overcome evil with good, falsehood with truth, and hatred with love.” Mildred Norman Ryder, AKA Peace Pilgrim

This quote is from an amazing women who called herself the “Peace Pilgrim“. This hyperlink brings you to a website about her life story. It is a fascinating storyto read. She had a simple message and a strong commitment of “walking for peace”. She started walking for peace in 1953 at the age of 45, she vowed to “remain a wanderer until mankind has learned the way of peace, walking until given shelter and fasting till given food.” She walked for 28 years and over 25,000 miles. She touched the hearts, minds and lives of thousands of  individuals across all across North America. Her message was simple and profound. 

As I have stated in the past, walking for long distances day after day changes you and as you change, you influence and change those around you and hopefully for the good. I know that many folks that walk the Camino, do come home changed and hopefully for the better. Certainly, the “Peace Pilgrim” was changed by her long walk for peace. Those years of walking help her to see more clearly that path of peace. She wrote them down in a booklet called “The Steps To Inner Peace“. It is a very small little booklet but it condenses down some core truths of living a peaceful life.

We recently went to see the musical “Dreamgirls” and was struck by the song “I am changing”. The song is a powerful reminder that we all make mistakes but we can change for the better. The lyrics “I am changing, Trying every way I can, I will be better than I am, I trying to find a way, To understand” spoke loudly to me, as that is how I feel. I am sure a long ways from where I need to be. I need to keep changing, especially after reflecting on some of the steps to inner peace.

Let’s all take some time to reflect more about how we can change to live a more peace filled life!

Blessings and all good,

John

Photograph of the Week

Mystical Magical Mountain

This was a double exposure taken this past Sunday evening of Mt Rainier from Useless Bay, Whidbey Island at sunset. The other image overlaid onto was of some of the beautiful clouds that evening near sunset. I loved how it makes Mt Rainier look like it is floating on clouds.