Overcoming fears

It was something I was struggling with for too long. A fear I had been carrying around for about two years. One that I had to face every day. And just couldn’t get over.

It started that awful day in August 2011. The day I was attacked and had all of my belongings stolen. The day I was left without any ID, in a country where the Canadian embassy provided very little support. The day I was left constantly feeling afraid to walk alone as I never knew who may sneak up be behind me.

And so when I arrived in Cappadocia, Turkey I was keen to hike, something I LOVE to do. I met friends to hike with. But there was still one hike I wanted to do. The Rose Valley from Cavusin to Goreme. But no one else was around to go with me. I attempted to do the hike alone.

I walked about five minutes down the path. But I just couldn’t do it. It was my last day in Goreme.

Rose Valley, Cappadocia Turkey, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

Rose Valley, Cappadocia Turkey, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

So I left town to move on to my next destination.  I was sad that I had let a fear take over my desire to see one of the top valleys in the area.

I wanted to do that hike and it was time to stop letting the criminals who changed my life take over. So I returned.

And set out to the hike. Alone. Tearful. Afraid. I nearly turned back several time.  And continuously questioned why I chose to get over my fear of walking alone/being attacked in a foreign country where I don’t speak the language and I already stand out with my red hair.

I worried that it would get dark before I finished. But it didn’t. I worried that someone would jump out of nowhere, like that awful day as I walked through a park. But no one was around except some other friendly hikers.

Rose Valley, Cappadocia Turkey, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

Rose Valley, Cappadocia Turkey, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

I tried to enjoy the views. But couldn’t. So I snapped a few photos so I could look back and realize just how beautiful the hike was.

Rose Valley, Cappadocia Turkey, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

Rose Valley, Cappadocia Turkey, Copyright Mandy Sinclair

And as I reached the “finished line”, I felt a huge sense of accomplishment. I celebrated with a nice glass of local wine. Before setting out the next day to do another hike.

Most importantly, I now walk around town without fear.  Knowing that I am in control of my life. The criminals may have my old passport, mobile phone and credit cards, but I have my confidence back.

4 thoughts on “Overcoming fears

  1. you were very brave and I commend you for that. Not sure I would have done it… I love reading your stories…

  2. I also enjoy reading your stories, seeing your photography, which is amazing, and wish that when I was in Morocco, I could have enjoyed it as you have… I was in a small village of Ouled Said, close to Settat… not much to do there… but did get to Casablanca, Marrakech, Rabat and Jadida.. I am travelling through your eyes now… Thank you for the wonderful blog..

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