The marathon today reminded me of how much cross-country skiing is part of my cultural heritage, and something I can feel the cells of my body have missed. It was thrilling to be back on skis and amongst so many others who love the sport.
I grew up in Norway where cross-country skiing is a national sport. During my childhood our family cross-country skied quite often, but only leisurely. I was not passionate about skiing as a child and racing was for sure not my thing. However, the older I got the more I came to enjoy the tranquility of the sport particularly because I was mostly skiing in the mountains above the tree line.
It was while cross-country skiing in the Norwegian mountains I came to learn about peace of mind. Skiing in this wide-open, untouched landscape, above the treetops, with no or few people in sight, with the diagonal movement of cross-country skiing, harmonized my brain and touched my soul.
It is thirty years ago since I left Norway. I have missed my old love of being out in the wild and cross-country skiing.
I am grateful that my husband and friends encouraged me to participate in this ski Marathon. It was a thrilling experience to be skiing amongst 25,000 participants (some doing the half marathon and others doing the full distance). It felt like I had come back to my element.
Somewhere along our life journey we may give up part of our cultural heritage and who we used to be. If we meet a partner who does not share the same heritage or if we move abroad, many of us let go of cultural heritage and values we love.
If we reclaim the old ‘parts’ of us, these can bring loads of joy and energy to our lives.