Don’t bring your sadness to the mountain…

Otherwise the mountain will not let you pass. 

Those were the words our guide started with on day 1. 

It was my mantra by day 3. Today we trekked 8hrs from Phading to Naamche- most of which was a steady incline. Just after lunch we passed the 3000m above sea level point and at this point we also began the bulk of our 800m incline. It was also the point my lungs said wtf. 

While I have been lucky and suffered next to no major altitude sickness symptoms- breathing is SO HARD. Especially doing rocky, make shift trails. I literally was repeating “don’t bring your problems to the mountain” the whole climb today. And taking breaks every 30 steps to do some deep breathing. If you’re wondering what it feels like to breath here (and come from the prairies where you reside at 50m above sea).. It’s like tying a scarf over your face, and then 3 plastic bags, and then running a marathon. 

Not exaggerating. 

The rest of my body? Feels amazing. Seriously. My muscles didn’t really fatigue, probably because my brain was so focused on getting oxygen in it didn’t have time to notice. If I put my hands on my ribs I could feel them expanding and exhaling to their absolute maximum- something not many of us experience ever. Truly amazing and truly uncomfortable all at once. 

There are so many moments where I am hit with a sudden realization of where I am and what I’m doing. Like walking over a swinging bridge over a rushing river, 6stories (at least) in the air surrounded by mountains. Prayer flags tied everywhere and the clouds at eye level. 

This is real and this is where I am. Unbelievable. I’ll write more tomorrow- we stay in Naamche for two nights to acclimatize (thank god). Now I eat some more garlic soup, momos and tea before bed! 

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4 thoughts on “Don’t bring your sadness to the mountain…

  1. Susan says:

    Oh Kathlyn! I’m so excited for you! Keep these posts going and share pictures. I have many Tibetan friends who will want to be shown pictures of my niece. I have so much connection with Tibetan culture. I even once hung out the HH himself. How do you like the monks? Butter tea will help you feel good too! And I love the mantra!

    Lots of love
    A. Susan

    • Katmah says:

      My internet isn’t good enough to put photos on the blog but creep my fbook if you can!

      • shaktisu@sasktel.net says:

        I don’t know how to creep Facebook. I have no idea. Send me your favorites? Lol

        ~Susan Hossack MSW, RSW

        “The cosmos is a speck…it is consciousness that is vast.”

        >

  2. Susan says:

    I meant momos, not monks but monks too.

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