PC # 83 – Epilogue

Here is the Epilogue to the book – The Way, My Way.

Epilogue

To walk the Camino is to do a pilgrimage.

That’s what I did – I became a pilgrim.

I followed in the footsteps of millions of other pilgrims who, over the years, the decades, the centuries, have made their way to Santiago.

What did I learn?

 GRATITUDE:

I learnt to be grateful. Grateful for simple things.

For a bed at night. For clean clothes in the morning. I was grateful when it didn’t rain. I was grateful when the pain receded.

I learnt the meaning of gratitude.

 HUMILITY:

I learnt humility.

My pain humbled me.

Other people humbled me too –

People who walked much further than me. People who had pain much greater than mine.

Ultimately though, I was humbled by the occasion. By just walking the Camino.

That in itself was humbling.

THE POWER OF THE INCREMENT:

I learnt that you can achieve big goals by taking small steps.

 A lot of small steps.

But only if you don’t give up until you reach your goal.

MY POSSESSIONS ARE MY BURDEN:

I carried everything I needed on my back. Up and down mountains, across plains, over rivers.

My possessions were my burden. Anything unnecessary was an unnecessary burden.

It’s the same in life. My possessions are my burden.

 JUDGE NOT:

There were so many times I judged people.

People I thought old and frail. People I thought not as capable as me.

Actually I mis-judged them. I was wrong.

I learnt that you must never judge, and never underestimate others.

 WE ARE MORE CAPABLE THAN WE REALISE:

I discovered I was more resilient than I realised. I was able to overcome obstacles I didn’t think possible.

And I saw miracles.

My pain left me on the Meseta. My eyesight improved. But perhaps the greatest miracle of all is that I changed.

 YOU BRING FORTH WHAT YOU FEAR THE MOST:

I learnt that what you fear the most, you bring into your life.

I was scared of climbing high mountains. And because of my anxiety, I made it everything I feared.

Even before I left for Spain, I was scared my knee would thwart me.

It did.

What you fear, you attract. 

I CAN TRUST MY PGS:

I learnt I could trust my PGS – my Personal Guidance System – my intuition.

It shepherded me along the Camino.

The times I ignored it were the times I had difficulties.

The times I trusted it were the times I experienced something wonderful or profound.

 EVERY DAY IS A PILGRIMAGE:

I learnt that you don’t need to walk the Camino to be a pilgrim.

You can be a pilgrim every day of your life…

If you see that your life IS a pilgrimage.

 WHAT DID I ULTIMATELY LEARN?

That the only thing that matters – that truly matters – is love. 

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29 thoughts on “PC # 83 – Epilogue

  1. Very eloquent Bill – Bravo!

    I absolutely love every word. You have put into words my exact experiences, my exact revelations, you my friend are AWESOME!

    Thank you for singing my song through your experiences.

    Arlene

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    • Dear Arlene –

      (this is me blushing.)

      Thank you.

      I had a funnier epilogue in a previous draft, but I felt the book needed to be anchored in something more sincere, and heartfelt.

      It’s so hard to get complex thoughts down into sparse text, and still keep the full meaning and power of those thoughts.

      Cormac McCarthy is a master at it.

      Bill

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  2. This really touches me Bill. I see it as a prayer of thanks to the Universe, written by an honourable, funny and sweet newly -minted Pilgrim. Thank you for sharing it!

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  3. Similar to one of your post Camino blogs of course. I remember them all. They were great. Thanks to your blog, I too was concerned about the climb to O’Cebreiro simply because I heard how much you were dreading it and your comment that it was “bloody hard”. Therefore, I made it a short day and frankly did not think the climb was that much. But I think you did it on top of 30K or something like that. See what an influence you had on me. You scared me. I mused that if a youngster like you thought it was bloody hard what would an old guy like me think.
    🙂

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    • haha –

      glad my suffering helped you!!

      🙂

      Yes, I did 30kms + that day, to get to the top of O Cebreiro. What made it really hard for me though was my anxiety – I didn’t sleep hardly at all the night before, and so I was totally knackered.

      I remember reading your blog at the time, and you saying you cruised up – and I thought good for you!!

      Bill

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    • Julie –

      thank you.

      Still working on the Epilogue –

      trying to get the words and thoughts absolutely right.

      but again, thanks.

      Bill

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    • That’s the way you’ll get there Abbey –

      small steps.

      It’s amazing how powerful they are, cumulatively.

      Bill

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  4. Dear Bill, won’t comment as such as all the others have so eloquently told you how great a word-smith you are, but wanted to thank you, as I had a dilemma that was hounding me, letting me get no sleep last night nor rest today till I had it resolved, and your comment about bringing about what you fear the most, had me stop, rethink and come to a solution that I could not be controlled by that particular fear – so thanks!! 🙂

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  5. Hi Bill – your epilogue is wonderful … each statement makes a powerful contemplation. The Power of the Increment really resonates with me. Thank you so much for sharing the preview of it with us all.
    Cheers – Jenny

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    • Dear Jenny – so pleased it meant something to you.

      I’ve tried to distill everything down into a few simple sentences. Things that I’ve come away with.

      Hopefully others reading the book will find a connection too.

      Bill

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      • Hi Bill – your epilogue expresses so succinctly exactly how I feel about the Camino and the lessons we can all learn from our pilgrimage experiences.
        With your blessing, I will put the individual epilogue statements into my ‘lucky-dip’ bag of quotes for contemplation while I’m hospitalering at Rabanal next year. I’m hoping to share the contents of the bag with pilgrims as they come and go from Refugio Gaucelmo. Cheers – Jenny

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      • Thanks so much Bill – everyone reading the contemplations will benefit.
        Thanks again – Jenny

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  6. Bill, I have tried to respond a few times, but I seem to be shut out. Am I learning to cope with rejection pre-Camino? Hope this post works.
    Your epilogue certainly summarises so beautifully what we have read in your blogs and now look forward to in your book. Every word packs a punch!!
    I wonder if you realize what a wide circle of influence you have cast? Speaking from experience, you have changed the way I see the world, for the better. Thought I was doing just fine, then along came Bill and PGS.
    May you be blessed in all that you do.
    Anne

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    • Dear Anne –

      wow, that is very affecting, what you say.

      thank you. thank you thank you.

      I’m concerned though that you had problems posting –

      can you tell me what happened?

      And if you have difficulty again, just email me on –

      billpgsblog@gmail.com

      Again Anne, thank you. it means a huge amount to me…

      Bill

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