Thursday, July 1, 2010

De-Seattle-izing the Approach

I'm trying hard to relearn my take on dealing with situations; learning to cut to the chase rather than passive aggressively beating around the bush in classic Seattle style. I'm a born Seattleite after all, so this is a bit of a challenge.  But with that in mind, here's the deal... Most people who climb with me know the routine. We get to the rock. I'm psyched!!! I'm feeling strong. I can do this!! And I'm gonna love it.

And then.

I hit an arete, a windy, airy exposure like the one in that photo, or a run out. And. I. Freeze. Scared shitless to day-ruining degrees. I could give you my classic line - I started climbing to get over a fear of heights...blah blah blah. But lets cut the BS - its been 7 years. Its finally time to quit with the passive aggressiveness (or whatever you want to all it) and step up.

Turns out, I climb quite well. Having been a swimmer for a long time, I have "those" shoulders and arms and I'm happy on rock when I can use them. I love the feeling of getting a sequence, of dancing on rock. I especially love climbing when I have a top rope coming down to me. The love of leading has been harder to nurture. Its really more of a love-hate relationship. I love to climb, hate the thought of falling. Just ask my dear climbing partner Zanetka who recently laughed after I shot her the "are you effing kidding me?" look when I was asked to just Fall. And it was during falling practice, so I knew I was going to have to let go at some point. See, the problem is I dont trust myself or, maybe better confessed, dont have the confidence to trust myself.

So, in similar fashion to a day 7 years ago when I decided a fear of heights was dumb and I'd better get over it by getting high up, I've decided this silly lack of confidence is gonna have to go, too. The time has come to get over it. So here I am in the middle of my self appointed Year of Climbing. Time to step it up, cut out the passive aggressive bullshit and make it happen. I'll keep you posted. So far so good - I've got some catching up to do on this end, but already, as of July 1 when I hit the post button, I'm on my way. And I must admit, the love is growing. Happy climbing.

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