You Can't Always Get What You Want

You Can’t Always Get What You Want



Isn’t that what ol’ Jagger said?

I write a post about my strong need for solitude and to feel alive, then I hop in the car and head up to a remote trail on the northern tip of Vancouver Island to spend some time in the wild with my thoughts.

I start the trail with 11 other strangers but soon distance myself so I can get lost in the beauty and ruggedness of my surroundings.

I feel so happy, I am in my element.


I am walking along, enjoying the sound of the ocean waves lapping up against the ocean polished cobblestones at my feet, breathing in the salty sea air…

…and the next thing I know I am on the CCGC Cape Sutil heading toward the emergency room in a small sea town with a dislocated and broken shoulder.

Well, okay then.

Internet pic for illustration, obviously not MY ride. 🙂

I got something entirely different.  Life went a completely different direction than I anticipated.

I spent the evening in the company of two nice gals, Kristina and Kora, from Germany who helped until Craig and Dale from the Canadian Coast Guard arrived.  I got a ride on a zodiac, something that would have thrilled this avid Clive Cussler fan (only the Dirk and Kurt series, of course) under better circumstances.  Sam and Victoria took me in the ambulance to the emergency room where Dr. Muthanna, Bridget, Alison and Jen treated me.

I got to know the small town of Port Hardy and its friendly citizens better (I ran into Bridget later at the coffee shop and Dale at the diner).  I got a nice tour of the state-of-the-art Coast Guard station and I told Craig I would tell you that he is single, ladies, and I can put you in touch (Dale is spoken for, I’m afraid). My brother flew on a plane to said small town to drive me home.  I returned to an overwhelming amount of love and concern from my family and friends who had to imagine for about 5 hours what had caused me to push my emergency beacon.  Lots and lots of connections…

Leaving me to wonder, what is the message here? Because there is absolutely nothing can I do to change what happened.  There is no rewind button, no point in beating myself up about what I did or didn’t do.

Coulda, woulda, shoulda.

The only thing I have control over is how I chose to frame what happened, something I feel my faith helps me do.

Life just isn’t always fair.

Life just doesn’t always make sense.

Sometimes it just plain sucks.

Some people talk about unanswered prayers.  Some about God’s plan.  I’m not always sure that is how it works but I do know that I can either choose to focus on the loss or instead concentrate on what good will come from this.  That whole lemonade out of lemons thing.  Face life with gratitude.

It’s been hard, I’ll admit.  I have spent the last week alternating between industry and depression.  Organizing kitchen cupboards. The second or third nap of the day. Typing with my non-dominant hand is rough.  I want to feel sorry for myself.  I want to be mad. I am still shaking my head in disbelief.

I want to feel all the emotions.

And maybe, there is just a little bit of relief.  I get to (have to) step off the spinning wheel for a bit.  When I try to think about the positive aspects that could come out of this, I can’t help but think about all those other things on my to-do list that I haven’t made a priority because I was in pursuit of this one passion.

Is it a sign?  Who’s to say for sure, but I hope to make the best of whatever it is because we all know it could most definitely be worse.

I live a privileged life.

No, unfortunately you don’t always get what you want.

But maybe, just maybe you get what you need.

For the entire story, pictures and video of my adventure (albeit short), you can check out my trip report North Coast Trail Attempt.  For more information on this trail, head over to my North Coast Trail page!

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