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December 27 2023, Bealey Hut to Hamilton Hut:
Orange and I started before the girls. They wanted to wait for the clouds to part so they could receive the view and take some photos. I took it extremely slow, giving Orange the space to walk in front of me, however he was patiently waiting for me around each corner. The craving to be left alone was coming on strong again.
“Did you talk about me when you were with Lenses?” he asked. “I noticed an energy shift.”
“Yeah, we did,” I said, “but more-so about Lenses and her dating life.”
“How did the topic of dating come up?” he asked.
I told him exactly what we talked about, not sure why. I was a pretty ‘to myself’ person the majority of the time but if someone asked for details about something in my life, I would often spill everything like an open book.
We took kratom again for shits and gigs.
“You know,” I said, “I have a theory that you get me to take this stuff so that I’ll start blabbering my life story and deepest thoughts to you.”
He smiled, then we packed up and got going. The energy changed now that it was only us two. I noticed I had been avoiding it being that way.
Why was I scared?
Why didn’t I feel open?
We found a big tree that provided some nice shade so we took a break before we arrived to the junction for the hut. We both sat on our individual backpacks and I could feel Orange was about to get something off his chest.
“I’m happy we finally got to hike alone again,” he said, “I’ve been waiting for the right time to talk to you.” He grew nervous, then continued, “Sorry, I’m shit at havin’ these conversations.”
“Me, too,” I said, trying to ease the tension, knowing exactly where the conversation was headed and attempting to prepare myself mentally.
“Okay,” he started, “I didn’t make any expectations before you came out here. I mean, I did have a crush on ya when I met ya on the PCT.”
I took a deep breath.
“The woman I was hikin’ with back then told me to make a move on you but I couldn’t knowing you were with Fox at the time.”
“I had a crush on you, too,” I said, “but I really respect the fact you didn’t make a move on me.”
“Yeah that’s not in mah nature,” he said. “Goldie, I didn’t expect to end up likin’ you the way I do,” he continued, “the thing is, I want somethin’ deeper. With you. And the thing is, when you were tellin’ me about Julia, I realized how much it bothered me because I really like you. And I saw you two talking on the bench, but I didn’t want to intrude or get in the way of anything you two had or were forming.” He took a long pause, then finished by saying, “but the thing is, I won’ be stickin’ around if ya end up hittin’ it off with someone else. It’s jus too hard for me.”
I moved my tush down into the dirt to better ground myself.
“That’s totally understandable,” I said, “I would be the same way. Thank you for sharing this with me.”
He wanted to continue finishing the trail with me, he just needed to say what was on his mind. I looked into the dirt and anxiously played with a stick.
After a long pause, I said, “Gosh, I really wish you didn’t like me.” What I meant to say was that he didn’t really like me because I wasn’t giving him the whole picture of myself. “Energetically, you’re the exact type of guy I would want to be with,” I said, “the thing is, I feel I’m not there. I can just feel it. I still have patterns I’m playing out. I know myself right now and I would self-sabotage the situation. It’s almost like when I receive something good, I seem to feel as if I don’t deserve it or something and I will find a way to destroy it. I know that I would fuck it up, I just know. I don’t want to get your hopes up in any way, hence why I stepped back energetically.”
“Yeah, I could feel that,” he said.
I felt I wanted to hide and become invisible. I didn’t want to talk about this anymore. I wanted us to go back to the old days. I wanted it to be how it used to be. I was scared to show him who I truly was and the manipulation I was capable of.
“You’re so real, Goldie,” he said, “I’ve neva met anyone as real as you.”
I’m not, I thought to myself.
I could sense how I was bringing him down gently instead of being blunt. What I really wanted to say is that I know I would fuck someone else if I got the chance because I was looking for a man to choke me out against a wall, yet simultaneously make me feel as if he would protect me in a life or death scenario.
“I’ve neva met anyone like you in general,” he continued, “the girls from back home are so masculine and all they want to do is drink alcohol and not pay attention to what’s going on. I love that you don’t do that or are at least conscious of those things. I love that you’re conscious about Covid and such things. And I’m really not good at all this physical touch stuff, but I just want to cuddle ya at night. I don’ want ya to have to close yourself off energetically from me.”
“But I feel like I have to,” I said, “I am a very touchy feely person and that is my biggest love language, but I don’t feel comfortable doing those things when I know you have strong feelings for me. I don’t want you to think there is more there than there actually is, and I mean, we have to be realistic. I’m going back to America soon. What happens then? We go on living.”
He took a breath and held eye contact with me. “There’s so many times on trail I have to pinch myself because I can’t believe I’m actually hiking with you. I can’t believe that I get to see this beautiful woman everyday who’s inta the same lifestyle as me.”
“I have a hard time seeing myself in a good light.” Its weird, sometimes I felt like a catch and knew what I had to offer. Other days, I felt like complete trash. “When I look back on stuff I’ve done, I have a hard time seeing myself as a good person. I feel really shitty about myself a lot of the time, as if I’m not worthy of what I want.”
I wasn’t the woman he wanted me to be. I was in the beginning stages of becoming that woman. I was only starting to move towards that direction. I wish I could just switch on my emotions for him and say I wanted to have kids and start a homestead. “Let’s do it right now. Let’s start today.” But I don’t want to. I don’t want kids and I don’t want to give up my lifestyle. I love my life. I want to travel alone. I didn’t know if I would ever grow tired of traveling solo and seeing the world the way I did. I was open to sudden change, but I could feel I was still far away from the vision I desired and that was okay.
But why would Spirit align us, especially now?
Why did he feel attraction and I didn’t?
I felt inspired to draw something in the dirt. Sometimes during these conversations I would feel uncomfortable or tense so I would divert the energy into making art. I kneeled down and used the palm of my shaky hands to steadily move the dirt into the shape of a heart. I took my time outlining it with detail, meditating while doing so through delicate movements. I grabbed twigs and outlined it for better definition.
“You don’t want to be with me, Orange. I’m telling you. I’m crazy,” I said, “I would like to believe I’m not and that it’s just the men I meet that bring it out of me. But I feel like I really am. I get upset about things that I feel like no one else gets upset about and it scares me.” My voice began cracking and my eyes welled up with tears. I broke eye contact and continued making the heart. “I’m really scared. It’s really hard for me to put myself out there again, especially right now (referring to Voodoo). I’m really vulnerable and I seem to have a long recovery time after I experience heartbreak.” My vision blurred with hot tears as I let out a breath of despair. “I’m sick of it,” I spoke softly, “I’m sick of trying again and again, opening up to a man only to have him run away from me once he gets to know me.” I swallowed my sorrow, stood up and took a step back to look at the heart then went to grab some lichen to make a bolder outline. To finish it off, I found thick beige colored sticks and made rays of light around the heart. As I looked at it, I saw my own heart—open and inviting, shining and whole—most of all, fragile… just waiting for people to step all over it.
“I’m glad you can feel safe to open up to me,” he said, “I love listening to you talk and share these parts of yourself so I can better understand you.”
Sometimes I just wanted to kick myself in the ass. I looked at the situation I found myself in. I had truly never met another person like Orange. He wasn’t one to be loud nor did he have an insatiable need for attention and I found it to be such an attractive quality.
He actually inspired a feeling in me, showing that I didn’t have to be afraid to try again. I felt a sense of safety around him. I felt comfortable to express the vulnerable sides of myself. I didn’t feel a hidden agenda from him to take what I said and use it against me. He even had the same exact life vision as me, the same goals, priorities and outlooks. He especially knew how to be gentle with me and handle me with care, something I was deeply calling for. He was the one I prayed for.
So why wasn’t I feeling it?
Why wasn’t I attracted?
It was energetically a clear ‘no.’ It was the most romantic story him and I had. The way we met, how far we came, how we reunited, our visions—the story was perfect. And here I was, saying no to that. Sometimes I wished the Holy Spirit would give me the overall perspective, the birds eye view in moments like this.
Why did Spirit bring us together?
Why did he fall for me and I didn’t?
Why couldn’t I love him the way he loved me?
Why was I not ready?
Would I ever be?
“Also,” he said, “do ya feel bothered when people think we’re a couple?”
I pondered on that one. “Mm, I feel the word I’m looking for is ‘annoyed,’” I said, “I feel annoyed that people often make that assumption. It has nothing to do with you, it just bothers me that it goes to that instead of us simply being friends.” I thought about how angry I used to become when my Dad, little brother and I would go out in a public setting and most everyone would assume I was his sugar baby instead of his daughter. Still, I didn’t find myself correcting people. It didn’t bother me that much that I needed to make an outwardly comment about it.
We trekked on and quickly showed up at the hut. We met other thru-hikers there, mainly NOBO. Conrad was there, too. My eyes wandered lustfully to him and I suddenly felt wrong for having those thoughts. I decided to rest my eyes and fell asleep in what appeared to be seconds. I woke up to the feeling of drool running down the corner of my mouth, indicating deep sleep.
My eyes wearily focused in on the Japanese girls.
“Pancake?” Lenses asked.
“Mm, yes,” I said sleepily. “That sounds so good.”
She had been ready to get rid of the weight of the pancake batter for quite some time now. I walked groggily to the table, still half asleep. We added water to the mix in the bottle, shook it up and took turns helping make the pancakes. The other hikers that were with us were getting a huge kick out of us and our excitement for shitty pancakes. We were extremely vocal, saying, “wow”, “mm,” “so good,” “ahhh,” over and over again. Conrad was standing in the circle next to us, baffled by our tramily. I could read his thoughts saying “what the fuck” and “who are these people.”
“Did you see the heart I made for you and Ikra?” I asked Lenses.
“Yes!” she said, “immediately when I saw, I knew Freyja made.”
“I saw it, too,” Conrad said, “we all had to walk around it because it was directly on the path.”
For our savory meal, Orange took nearly another hour to make us grilled cheese sandwiches.
After they were done, he goes, “Okay, photo time.”
All girls us snapped pictures while Conrad looked at us in wonder again and started laughing, especially when I made a comment saying it looked like shit.
Before I went to bed, I received confirmation I wanted to delete my OnlyFans account. I didn’t want to be that girl anymore. I wanted to go back to simplicity. Spirit had shown me I didn’t need to make money in a way that no longer felt in alignment for me. I envisioned myself working odd jobs and taking a step back on my macramé business. I felt inspired to make it more doable for myself by keeping track of it on my own rather than hiring more employees. That thought felt wholesome to me. I didn’t mind if that meant I would have less money. If my heart felt in alignment and my mind a little more relaxed, that was all that mattered to me. So here’s to new beginnings.