Sometimes to Get to the Good Stuff, You've Got to Paddle Upstream

Hey y'all :) I hope you had a rejuvenating weekend! Mine was equal parts productive + relaxing...just how I like it!

On Sunday, Adam + I woke up early and went to the gym to get our sprints done then we decided to take the kayaks out on the river.

It was a beautiful day (freaking hot, but beautiful nonetheless) and we knew we wanted to spend it on the water. So we went to a local park that had a canoe launch where we would put in, and we knew that we needed to paddle upstream first then when we were ready, we were going to turn around and ride back downstream to get back to the launch area.

We spent a little over an hour paddling upstream and enjoying the sunshine + each other's company.  It wasn't TOO bad paddling upstream since we were fresh (minus the fact that we did sprints that morning  - good thing we didn't need to use our legs to paddle or we might have been in trouble, haha) but once that hour mark hit, we (mostly me...ha!) were ready to turn around and head back the other way.

On the way upstream we spotted a cute, little tree swing hanging over the river, but we just kept paddling, laughing about how it probably wouldn't actually hold our weight.

On the way back downstream, I was in the front, just paddling away. Then I hear Adam call out for me to turn around and come back to the swing. Um, excuse me? #1 I can hardly maneuver this thing going forward so how does he expect me to turn it around? And #2 I'm tired from paddling upstream all afternoon so why would I turn back around and do that again?

BUT, because my husband is so sweet and convincing, I bucked up and managed to make my way back to the swing. We spent 20 minutes playing on the swing, pushing each other and laughing like kids. It was by far my favorite part of our kayak trip.

All this to say - sometimes things are going to be difficult. You'll have to paddle upstream for a ways. Then you'll get to ride downstream. Then sometimes you might just have to toughen up, despite your depleted energy level,  and paddle upstream again. You might be exhausted and irritated once you finally reach your destination, but all of the struggle that you went through to get there makes you stronger...better. 

Adam yelled out to me as I was struggling to get back to the swing, "C'mon babe, you can't always just go with the flow - you get too comfortable and nothing fun happens!" He is so right. And I've obviously heard that before, but seeing it as such a symbolic manifestation was powerful for me. 

So I encourage you to not let your fear keep you from occasionally paddling upstream...you might miss the good stuff!

xo, Jess



  1. Awww I love it! Just the reminder I needed today!

  2. So needed to read this today. Been loving your posts so far.

    1. You're so sweet - thank you! I've truly missed this creative space and I'm so glad to be at it again!


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