I would have never dreamed it possible, but for one hour, I felt stronger and healthier than all the “healthy” tourists around me. That hour was when I decided to climb up a waterfall in the spectacular rainforest park of Manuel Antonio.
I think my curiosity and sense of adventure overcame my physical weakness and any fear of my limitations, but in any case, I couldn’t help myself. As soon as I saw the magnificent waterfall, I knew I just had to see what it looked like from above.
“Is there a path to the top?” I asked the four tourists who were bathing in the waters below.
They looked at each other. “I don’t think so,” said one. “Anyway, it looks slippery.”
Undaunted by fatigue and mesmerized by the beautiful falls before me, I dropped my backpack and in my flip flops, attempted to ascend the narrow, rocky ledges adjacent the falls.
Briefly, as I climbed, I wondered if my legs would give out, but I blocked the fear and was rewarded by a stunning view of the rainforest, and another cascade which spilled into pools of water below.
I plopped down directly beneath the cascade, and it provided a spectacular massage for my aching back. Then, as I stood above the other tourists, who were looking up at me with what seemed a mix of curiosity and amazement, a sense of triumph overcame me.
I have Lyme and I did this!
The climb wasn’t terribly difficult, neither was it long, but the stronger folk amongst me hadn’t attempted it, even when I beckoned them to join me at the top.
For one brief, shining moment, I wasn’t sick anymore.
As the crazy doctor at my guest house has been telling me daily this week, “You don’t have Lyme. You are just a a person who gets tired sometimes,” I realized that what I really need is more waterfall experiences to show me that indeed, I am not handicapped, at least not in my mind.