The Hatchelorette Day 4: Secret Hotsprings and Reflection Time.

My Hatchelorette road trip was designed with the intent to take some time for myself before my first Little Human arrived. I’m 8months pregnant, and I know that this will be the last time I get to travel by myself as a “single, independent human.” My next chapter will be different. I will have a family, a dependent and I know though great and wonderful changes are ahead – Melba will not be just Melba anymore so I need to celebrate myself and who I was, who I am and who I will be.

Hatchelorette n. It’s the last hurrah before one gives birth (“hatching day”), happens in the third trimester when the final countdown begins. A journey that celebrates the mother to be as the women she was, is and will be. It must also be a solo adventure in the wild, an adventure than emboldens you and reminds you that your are amazing and capable of anything. – Melba Seto.

Over 2000km in the last 4 days and my last day was the “gravy on the prime rib.” I woke up next to the natural hot spring with Dragon snuggled in my blanket. It was -5 degrees celcius, frost on the ground and only the gentle roaring of the cold river could be heard. Quiet steam rose from the hot pools below and I was able to catch the sunrise in the springs all to my lonesome.

I convinced Mark and Emma to meet me here after their ski day and soon the three of us shared an amazing morning, collectively basking in the healing sulphuric waters.

This gave me time to reflect on a journey well worth making. Only the nights have been really difficult. What would have normally been a rejuvenating rest on my trusty camp set up was actually excruciating when 8months pregnant.

Falling asleep is no issue, it was the periodic waking up with surging hip and back pain, and when I would try to rotate to change positions, my hips and pelvis would “pop” follows by a wave of pain. I was worried maybe things were dislocating, then I reassured myself that yup. They probably were because with the Relaxin hormone the body is getting all loosey goosey for the fetus to come. Besides the short, painful sleeps, I was overwhelmingly rewarded by everything else.

This last soak in the Renova Hot Springs gave me and the fetus a chance to have a little talk about the things that were important to us and things we appreciated in life.

1. Be Enduring.

I was anxious about the length of the drive and the distance I would be travelling at 8months pregnant. Like most people I often bombard myself with worry and fear when I’m about to do pretty much anything.

What if something happened to me or the baby? What if I get in a car accident on the other side of the border? My back and hips are going to hurt. Maybe I’ll just go somewhere not as far…

However, I’ve always been taught to be accountable for my actions and see things through to the end. (Unless it’s not safe). So when moments seem long, painful and never ending it’s the ones that finish what they started that grow the most.

2. Be Patient & Value Friendships

Forging relationships is never easy, and less so an an adult. I find it harder and harder to meet people and make strong friendships. It is because of this that the friendships I have now, I cherish fully and make the effort to nurture the few yet amazing relationships I have.

I always say the love of a Melba is a rare and valuable thing. For when I love you I will go to the ends of the earth for you. I will feed you, shelter you, clothe you and protect you.

Through my years of travelling by myself I have met an ocean of people. I was fortunate enough to be able to share some meals and part of my trip with a couple travelling friends from Indianapolis that I met a couple years ago climbing in Mexico.

It gave me a chance to reflect on how important it is to make sure friendships go both ways and require more giving than taking. Mark and Emma have made the effort to visit Adam and I in Alberta the last two times and it was my turn to show them they were worth the effort as well. All it took was severely hundred km of driving and rough planning to make sure our paths crossed.

Just remember if you want relationships to last, you have to make them a priority.

3. Take the Road Less Travelled

Wherever life leads you, there will always be blockades, barriers and obstacles. It’s okay. Pick another route. Try something different and move forward. Sometimes this means doing something unconventional. Or extraordinary.

It may be scary. It may be hard. Even worse, you may be the only one going down that road. The most important this is to not give up, not get too deflated but to rise like the Phoenix and emerge from the ashes of life’s challenges. Remember it’s in the moments like these when you pull through the harder things in life, that you will be rewarded with great things… like private natural hot springs – at the least.

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