April 11th, 2016 ~ Day 17
I headed over to Thunderbird Mountain to get my hike in today. Parking at the lot off 67th Avenue I began my hike up the Desert Iguana Trail. A short trip uphill, that seems to always take my breath away each time I go up it. From the Desert Iguana, I headed up the Sunrise Trail, intending to do one of my usual loops.
Today is special day for me, as I celebrate my fifth anniversary of sobriety. Every year on my anniversary I have gone on a hike to reminisce about the previous year and remind myself of where I came from and how much I have grown. Five years ago, today, I walked in to my first AA meeting. Scared and afraid of the unknown. Drinking was a part of who I am and I didn’t know if I could live without it.
I sat in that first meeting and listened. I came here because I didn’t know who I was anymore and I didn’t want to be the person I had become. I sought refuge, and although I didn’t know what the outcome would be, I continued to go to those meetings. Since that first meeting, I did what those who have come before me suggested and I have managed to stay sober one day at a time, and only by the grace of God’s.
To be on this journey of hiking every day for 365-days and to celebrate my five years while on this journey is symbolic to me. Five years is a big deal. I have never done anything consecutively for five years, and this, to come so far in this life is one of my biggest accomplishments.
As I hiked, I continued to reminisce of my path in life. Continuing to grow spiritually, I have used hiking as a tool to grow. I enjoyed the beautiful weather as it was nice and cool out. It looked like it had rained last night, but over the mountain, there were barely any clouds. With the sun rising, it cast a pink-blue hue over the White Tank Mountains off to the west. The beauty our Arizona skies display always brightens my day.
Coming to the saddle on the Sunrise Trail I tried to capture more color in the sky, along with my favorite pile of lava rocks on the trail. My favorite because of the way it looms overhead as you make your way to the saddle. The colors are rich, and depending on the suns rays, the colors often change.
From the Sunrise Trail, I took the Ridgeline Trail, skipping the peak. The peak on this mountain is not my favorite and I usually skip it. Heading down the switchbacks on the Ridgeline, I captured the suns golden hue across the horizon, and from there I made it to the Coachwhip Trail.
Once I was back on the Sunrise Trail heading west, I turned to see the sun rising between the other to two mountains of Thunderbird. Casting its glorious rays over the valley. I made my way back to the trailhead ending up with just over 2.5-miles and 360-foot elevation gain. What a beautiful morning for a hike!
Grateful for this day and all I have accomplished in the last five years. It amazes me every day, who I was and where I came from to who I am now. I’m so glad I could celebrate with a hike. Nothing but gratitude for today! TYG!
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