Camino de Santiago

Learning to Trust My Path

March 22, 2017
church near ocean at sunset

If you followed my 2015 Camino, you know it was an emotionally challenging journey for me, as the Camino can be, of course, for many people, and for a myriad of reasons. Being on the Norte never quite clicked, so I ended up zigzagging all over northern Spain trying to figure out where I was supposed to be without ever settling into the Camino, any Camino. And I tried four; one of them twice!

Another reason for the challenge had to do with unmet expectations; as much as I had told myself that I wouldn’t have expectations, in the final analysis, I had tremendous difficulty refraining from comparing it to my 2014 walk on the Camino Francés. Finally, through a series of strange coincidences that came to a head in Logroño in a very unexpected way after I had switched from the Norte to the Francés, I found myself having to fully confront my feelings about being childless and about whether or not I wanted to take steps to change that.

There have been times during and after that summer, that I judged myself for my lack of commitment to the journey and for not continuing despite my discomfort. But not surprisingly, my haphazard, unorthodox Camino ended up being life-changing anyway, in completely unexpected ways, not the least of which was that I met someone special at Orisson the first night back on the Francés, after switching routes midstream, and consequently spent a significant amount of time in Norway in 2016. Although the relationship wasn’t destined to last, my love affair with Norway continues, and I hope to return to Scandinavia to study Norwegian at the University of Oslo in the near future. (Some of my Norway photos and images from other adventures can be found on my Instagram account, @SometimesSheTravels:TheWorld.)

Ultimately I’ve learned that I need to trust my path. Sometimes what appears to be “giving up” is actually “letting go”, and just because it looks or feels messy doesn’t mean it’s wrong.
Buen Camino!signature Elissa

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  • Tanya Valdes March 23, 2017 at 02:21

    Feeling I think very similar to your feelings at the time of your Norte, segmented or all over the place. Thank you for your insights.
    Leaving the Via de la Plata with a heavy heart to go see Oviedo and check out the Primitivo? I have no idea why???

    • Sometimes She Travels March 25, 2017 at 21:14

      Hi Tanya. Thank you for sharing how you are feeling. It’s good to know we are not alone. At the time I was crisscrossing northern Spain, I had no idea why either and yet doing so completely changed the trajectory of my life. My advice is to simply trust. Go see Oviedo, check out the Primitivo, and trust the universe…

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