River Of Hope Day After: You Never Know Who You Inspire
Home for the first night in my own bed felt really odd. I pined for the water. As soon as I got home the previous afternoon it was life as usual, clean up gear, make supper and do all the normal things a person does on a farm.
There were many messages from people that had been at the riverfront when I came in but had to leave before I chatted with them. It was so overwhelming to see so many people down at the water I didn't really think it was that big of a deal to watch lol.
Slowly the gravity of the how many people this paddle touched was becoming even more apparent. People with tears in their eyes as they watched me come in and strangers congratulating me, how incredible. This on a Thursday afternoon, it would have been much bigger on a Friday or weekend.
The following day I was going to town to do an interview with the paper and as I drove I thought if I see my friend out in her yard I'm going to stop. Low and behold there she was, I wheeled into her yard. As I got out she had the biggest smile on her face. We're good friends who don't have to see each other all the time but can start where we ended easily.
What she told me next blew my mind. She said, I stayed up at night and looked forward to the next day simply to see where you made it on the river....you gave me hope and a reason to keep going each day. I was speechless. Sometimes we don't even know when our friends struggle.
If nothing else ever comes out of this trip, that alone was worth it. However, I know for the people who spoke up about the importance of this paddle to them there is exponentially more who can't or didn't. They followed along with silence enjoying the journey too and that was the part I didn't grasp until now.
Our actions do impact many whether we know about it or not. Live your life with intent that inspires yourself not doing it for others. Inspiration will be a byproduct of living with joy and purpose.
See you on the river!
Sending You Love N SUP,
Owner Paddle Athabasca
CANRVRSUP River 1 Instructor