The one thing I have learned from climbing mountains is that mountains teach great life lessons. Just like I did after climbing Mountain Elgon, I bring you some of the lessons I learned after climbing Muhabura.
The first lesson is that each mountain is different and all climbers have their own unique experience of climbing the same mountain.
Having climbed Mount Elgon at the end of May, I was sure I was ready to take on Muhabura, because, after all, how different could it be? But I soon found out that there are several stark differences between Elgon and Muhabura. We climbed Elgon slowly, we took three days to get to the peak and two days coming down. We had to climb Muhabura in one day. Elgon had several flat places which eased the climb a lot. Muhabura does not have any flat place, it’s all steep all the way.
In the same way, it’s not right to compare the mountains we experience at a personal level. What looks like a small, easy challenge to you, is difficult for someone else, so do not compare your mountain to another person’s mountain. Also, while you may be experiencing the exact same challenge as someone else, it’s still true that your experience of that challenge will be different from another person experiencing the same challenge. We are unique, we are not wired the same and we cope differently. Rather than compare and contrast mountains, we should have compassion for each other, knowing that going through and surmounting challenges is an every day human occurrence.
May we seek to understand and empathize with each other, rather than dismiss or minimize each other’s challenges. Every one struggles with something at one time. So reach out and show some love.