No one is coming to the rescue unless…

Canopy TourMy niece asked my sister and me to take her on one of the adventures we had in January (I wrote about them here). We decided to go through a canopy tour at a different place. I wasn’t as afraid this time since for the most part I knew what to expect. I went first, then my niece, followed by my sister.

By the time I reached the last trapeze of the last obstacle, I lost all strength and mental will to continue. Somehow I sat on the trapeze instead of taking a few steps to the other end of it, and getting to the next tree (by stepping on the platform). The guides were on the ground, while my sister and my niece were approaching the previous tree. I sat down and enjoyed the view, breathing and wondering how I was going to get out of there, hoping someone would rescue me. It wasn’t fear that paralyzed me, it was the lack of strength, the exhaustion, and the lack of mental will I could do it. I think I lost the will a few trapezes before, when I had to use all my strength and raise my leg higher than usual to reach the next trapeze, and it felt daunting.

The guides tried to coach me: put the left foot up and step on the trapeze. I used my hands to bring my foot up to the wood. Then they said: now stand up. That was a pretty funny statement. Maybe during my ballerina years I could have done it, but not that day, and certainly not after over one hour of the canopy tour. I let both my legs hang again, and asked everyone to give me some time. I’d have to find a way, it was clear that no one was coming to rescue me and there was no other way out. The guides suggested something else: drag your butt to the other end of the trapeze, closer to the tree, and I did. Then, one of them said, stretch your arm all the way to the edge of the wooden platform closest to the tree, find the hole, place your hand there, and pull your body with your arm all the way to the platform. Before I did it, I said affirmations: I can do it, I’m going to do it, I can make it, and I kept breathing.

Perhaps I could have mentioned that my upper right arm had been hurting for over two months, and that’s the arm I needed. Luckily, the night before I had reached out to a friend who does healing work, we connected via FaceTime, and he helped me release some of the pain, by showing me points to press in my body. (This is another example of asking to be rescued, but having to do the work ourselves).

I slowly followed the guide’s advice, and mentally thanked my friend for his help the night before. Once my back was on the platform, I kept going until I got my butt in it as well. By the time I sat down, everyone was clapping and I joined in the celebration.

Lessons learned:

  • This experience was a clear reminder that our minds work both in our favor and against us. What made me give up in the last leg could have been the exhaustion, but it was mostly aggravated by the lack of confidence in that moment.
  • Not until I rested, connected to my heart space, breathed, I was able to open myself to receive instructions that were actually useful.
  • We won’t be rescued until we choose to allow it to happen, and take the steps to ask and receive it.
  • Only we can rescue ourselves no matter how many coaches, mentors, therapists, healers, guides we work with, in the end, it is up to each of us to gather strength, will, faith, commitment, combined with action to actually change our situation, ourselves, our lives.

Next time you feel done, you give up, you feel helpless and wonder if anyone will rescue you, take a moment to ground yourself, breathe, and change your self-talk as much as possible. Definitely reach out for help from others who have experienced similar situations, and have taken themselves out of them. AND, at the same time, keep filling your heart with confidence that you can follow their advice, and that you can move forward. Ultimately, it is solely up to you to choose which advice to follow, to use it, to pull yourself back up, hold on to the tree, and stand yourself up.


Elisa Balabram

PS. This post’s picture was taken a few hours later as we were leaving the place. Thankfully my embarrassing moment wasn’t captured since we weren’t allowed to carry anything with us during the tour.

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