Balance has never been something I've found easy to achieve. My emotions tend to be at the extreme ends of the scale, I'm either being incredibly sociable or a hermit, confident or an insecure mess, darting from being on a strict diet to complete binging. The hardest of all for me to achieve is the work/life balance. I posted about my workaholic nature in a previous post so I won't dwell on that today.
But as I made the decision whether to embark on the trek up the 365 Calvari steps in the old town of Pollenca I was having a severe tussle of thoughts. I thrive off pushing and challenging myself, but I am also very aware of the fact that I have a tendancy to push too hard to the point of burn out.
One of the pieces advice my fellow spoonies offer out regularly is not overdo it. I think they can tell from my day in the life style vlogs that I'm someone that finds it hard to say no, and tend to take on a lot/too much. Combining my inability to decline with my need to go the extra mile means that I end up in quite a state. But it's a pretty hard habit to break. I'm not sure habit is the right word actually...for me the desire to want the most out of life feels completely innate.
If you suffer with energy limiting illness you well have recieved mixed messages over the years...from people that have no idea about the conditions as well as those who are mean to be experts in their field. Dr's have told me that working out and doing vigorous exercise will help, you know because it's all in the mind (hmmmm). Then uninformed friends and family will say that I should go for a run or work out because it will make me feel so much better. While I know both have good intentions, following their advice has never resulted in me feeling better. In fact I have felt awful and not in that 'I've had a work out and I should hurt a bit way. No. This is the sort of strain and suffering that a couple days of bed rest would be advised.
As you can see from the pictures below I made it to the top of the stairs and was rewarded by a stunning vista. It dawned on me that this sequence of events served as a great metaphor. When you make the decision to push yourself, work that little bit harder (too hard even), you should weigh up in your mind whether it's going to be worth it. My problem has always been that I've worked too hard when it definitely hasn't been beneficial to me... in any way. As I reached the top of and saw that incredible view I knew that the achey limbs and panting, as well as the following day of buzzy legs, were worth it. As I took a few seconds to catch my breath and sip on a lemon fanta I got from the cafe that sits at the top of the steps, I realised that this would be one of the pivotal moments I'd remember from this fleeting trip.
So I guess what I'm trying to say is, while I commend anyone that consistently works hard, please don't push at any cost. Your mind and body can't take that sort of consistent pressure. Occcasionaly (or more than occasionally) allow for those pauses, or for that foot to ease on the accelerator. It's okay to say no, or to realise that challenge isn't right for you, or at lest right for you in that moment. Sometimes it's okay to just do enough...and no more than that.
Enough of me getting all philisophical on you...a bit about his beautiful spot.
On the first few steps you have some very cute shops. It begins as a series of low, widely-spaced stone steps which lull you into thinking this is going to be a very doable climb. They do become steeper and narrower, which when combined with blistering heat can become a bit challenging (particularly for a cfs sufferer).
Luckily you are constantly distracted by almost cartoonishly obscure cacti, adorable and pastel coloured homes and hotels, and some skinny but affectionate stray cats.
When you reach the top you'll gaze up at an adorable rustic chapel, and see a very welcoming beacon of hope in the form of the cafe filled with snacks, refreshments and ice lolly's. Much needed to revive us flagging walkers.
Head down the path on the right and you'll reach the viewpoint which gives you an unrivalled view of the town and the lush green foliage.
If you're in Alcudia this is a must during your stay.
Rat and Boa Dress
New Look Cuff
Claire's Accessories necklace