Thursday, August 10, 2017

30 Days of Gratitude: Prompt 17

There was a prompt 17 all ready and scheduled to be posted yesterday (Wednesday) but sometimes computers just, well, suck. So that post I finished somehow disappeared and isn't in my drafts folder on here. Lame. But hey, more writing isn't bad. I should be able to piece together a response at breakfast now before I get to my rainy commute. And go!

Day 17: What Touch Are You Grateful For Today? 

Work at the magazine the past four days has been intense. We're in between two deadlines for upcoming issues, I've been red-penning (editing) all sorts of submissions, shooting and editing photos in our studio and finalizing kits (different feature pieces of the magazine) to send-off to our art department. It's busy, busy, busy but it's the kind of busy I so enjoy. The prompt from yesterday brings calm to the storm. What touch am I grateful for? The touch of all the ridiculous holds on a rock wall. I started climbing three and a half years ago and it's since been one of the smartest life decisions I've made to engage in. Growing up, I sucked at pretty much all-things traditional sports. I can't catch or throw and my coordination is embarrassing haha. Rock climbing gave me this relief expression of "Finally, I have a sport I can actually get good at and be proud of."

When I started getting into climbing seriously, buying gear, a membership and dedicating myself to the sport- I was hooked. I use climbing, indoors and outdoors, as an escape from the daily grind, a chance to push myself physically and it's an open door to a whole new batch of best friendships. I think climbing is the best most incredible stress reliever. It's hard to explain through the punching of keys on a keyboard- but when you set your mind to finishing a hard route, breathing, focusing and going slow it's such a rewarding feeling when you grab that finishing hold at the top. I hit the climbing gym last night after work. There was a 5.10+ route at the gym with a set of petite, crimpy, finger-destroying black holds that I on-sighted (climb clean without falling for the very first time without any prior attempts or advice). And if you're not up-to-par on climbing lingo, I did this on an auto-belay which means that if one does get tired or falls, you come right down immediately rather than sitting their in the same spot if someone is belaying you. So in essence, an auto-belay throws a bit more challenge at you because you have to climb perfectly and efficiently otherwise you're done. When I clipped-in to my harness, chalked-up and started climbing, a familiar song came on over the gym's stereo and I instantly felt in my fullest, pure element of focus as I made my way delicately up the wall. I always tell people that when you're in the zone, 150% focused on your climb and you're climbing to a good song playing in your ears, it's like everything else in the world just takes a pause while you're roped-in. You'e slowly making your way up the wall in almost a synchronized dance motion. I killed the route and when I came back down from the top on my two-feet, I un-clipped, sat down to drink some water and quietly thought to myself... "That was solid." Climbing is a morale booster, a self-esteem builder. It's a skill-set and hobby I take so seriously. It's an activity I can set achievable goals and know right away if I'm behind, at them or ahead. There's always room for improvement with climbing and the self-motivation to get better, and better, and better at it fuels me. Climbing has changed my life for the better, it's something I will never, ever give up or stop doing. And I'm beyond grateful for getting into it during the spring of 2014, the amazing loyal friendships it's provided me with, the giant amount of confidence I've acquired from it and making this sport a life-long passion. Now I just need to keep buying more climbing gear...and figure out where to put it all in my apartment.

Cheers,
Robby

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