Monday, January 20, 2014

Hiking with Katy

My daughter's ex-girlfriend called me the other day to ask if I wanted to go hiking with her. That's right, "ex" in used to date. Being a religious family, getting past the gay issue has been quite a journey; but I'm thankful for it. Extremely thankful, actually; because being the mother of a gay child has changed me in ways I never thought possible. It's made me a better person, I hope. The people that I've met and the stories I have heard are a big part of that; including Katy.

Katy was "Kayden" when we first met. I haven't asked her why she changed back to her birth name, but I like to think it's because she is more at peace with who she has always been. It seems that way, anyway. Regardless of her reasons, I have certainly seen her grow and mature as a human being, and it's been wonderful to watch. I can only hope I've helped her a little on the way.

Lexi was not a fan of crossing the bridges!
So, back to the hike. When I picked her up, she had on a day pack that looked like a 10 year old's school backpack. (sorry Katy, but you know it's true) I had just run into her at REI buying her first real backpack the week prior, so I was confused. "It's too big for a day hike", she told me. When she confessed she was so excited about it being on sale (a girl after my own heart!) that she didn't even put the weights in it and try it out when she bought it, I convinced her she needed to load it up and test it out. Better to know if she hated it now than when she was out on a backpacking trip, right?
On the way I stopped at the Mt. Baker National Forest office to buy my annual Northwest Forest Pass, because when I was there last time I was so confused as to why they didn't sell the "Discover Pass" that I left without getting one. Too bad they are closed on weekends...when everybody is out hiking. Not that I'm whining about it or anything. ;)

Thankfully Katy had her own NW Forest Pass, so we were off to do part of Baker Lake's East Bank trail. This trail has both a northern and southern trail head; and even though it's less of a drive to the southern one, I really wanted to check out the northern end. Someday I plan on doing the whole thing as a two day group backpack, with a car at each end. (why backtrack when you don't have to?)
The lake was pretty darn low
I was hoping to check out Noisy Creek campground at 4.5 miles in, but we pooped out before we got there. (ugh, I hate not knowing how close we were...I bet it was less than a mile) Though, this day was really not about a destination or clocking in miles; it was about walking and talking. I just love the effortless of conversation when your hiking with someone; though I guess on some trails I have to think more about just trying to keep moving than talking--but this is not one of those trails.
Look at poor Lexi. She just wants off.
This bridge she can handle!
Katy was telling me about her desire to volunteer to help at risk kids, and how neat it would be to be involved in a program involving the outdoors. (nature has a way of healing the soul; I think this is true) I told her about running into two different groups while on different backpacking trips who were doing just that, when wouldn't you know it, we ran into another one. It looked like a boy scout group, and they had quite a lot of kids all set up with their tents when we got back to the parking lot. God bless them.
Profile pic worthy, I think

I believe Katy will find her niche and be a real blessing to people who are hurting; her own pain has given her such real compassion. I hope also to find my own place to help; in fact, I think I may already have. I'm giving a link to an article by a very courageous woman who has inspired me to try once again to start a support group for those who are struggling with faith and their sexuality, or that of a loved one. Get a tissue if your going to read it:
(don't know why I can't get that to work. You'll have to cut and paste, sorry!)
Whatever difficulties we have been through in life, the beautiful thing is it gives us opportunity to connect and help others who are struggling through the same thing. I haven't worked out the specifics yet, but if there is anyone out there who would be interested in a group like this, just email me at
A view of the suspension bridge from the river.
It's not difficult to get down to the water.

Nothin like the smell of wet dog for the whole ride home

1 comment:

  1. So glad you and Katy had the opportunity to go on a hike together and catch up (and really happy to know she's happy!!). Looks like it was a beautiful day! Love you.