The Quality of Being Spontaneous and Where It’s Led Me

Admit it, we’ve all had a moment in our lives where we had to jump into a situation with our eyes closed, not sure of the outcome whether it be good or bad. Many of my life choices are spontaneous. From deciding last-minute to transfer out of my home state of California to Trinity University after my first year in college; to choosing to be an Accounting major at random; to choosing a college based on where I could play collegiate tennis only to end up joining the track team; to deciding two weeks in advance to go to Peru for a month this summer. My choices are what most people consider spontaneous decisions. I was destined for this life-altering decision-making process by two parents from two completely different worlds. My father who was born and raised in Mexico City, Mexico, and my mother who was born and raised in a Mid-Western suburb Lombard, Illinois. Both took chances leaving their homes in search of better opportunities to start a new, exciting life in Los Angeles, California; the city where I was born and raised in.

My mother and father divorced when I was a small child and I was raised by my wonder-woman of a mother. She always pushed me to jump into the unknown, to take a risk, to be spontaneous and courageous, and to put my problems into perspective.As an only child, I learned how to be independent and self-driven from watching her function without the support of a close family. To me, my mother was the epitome of a superhero.

My mother’s bold and determined mindset shaped my childhood and molded me into the person I am today. Growing up, my mother was the dare-devil, outdoorsy, nature-enthusiast woman who would take me on road trips, hiking excursions and adrenaline-pumping activities. I can remember her encouraging me to do outrageous activities that not many children should attempt. Like the time I hiked Angel’s Landing  (see photo below) in Zion National Park when I was about eight years old. It was during the winter when snow was covering the entire face of the cliff and you can only reach the top by hanging onto a series of chains while climbing. Or the time I hiked Mount Whitney, the highest peak in the contiguous United States. Or the annual trips to Joshua Tree National Park during Thanksgiving where my mother and I wou-

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Hiker uses chains to scale Angel’s Landing during the winter in Zion National Park, Utah.

ld free climb immense boulder piles and rock formations. We did all of these challenging things with no intentions of finishing the entirety of the journey we set out for, nor to make a life-changing experience out of it. No matter the level of difficulty nor the level of spontaneity, if we were together, the challenge was hidden by the enjoyment of the present moment. We embraced spontaneity and it led me to a better sense of myself.

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