Tonya Damron Photography

Dream Lake || Rocky Mountain National Park || Knoxville TN Destination Photographer


People ask me all the time if I’m afraid of traveling by myself. My reply is always the same…”The worse thing that could happen to me is I could die.” they always look at me puzzled and then I continue….. “and if I were to die on one of my crazy adventures, I’d rather tell that story when I got to heaven than something boring.”  I want to go to heaven used up, worn out and spent. I don’t want to arrive in perfect condition, I’ll get that body when I arrive!

Last week I was asked that very question, I replied with the same answer, but I elaborated just at little. I told my new found friend that when you really start living fear isn’t so much of a focus anymore. I continued that, If we don’t choose how we want to live our lives, someone else will do it for us.  Today I found the below quote and it’s probably my new favorite, it sums up my lives theory pretty well.

“The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.” -Mark Twain

Y’all seriously! How true is that quote above? If we are living life to the fullest, we can have no regrets when we die!  I don’t know about you, but when I get old I don’t want to sit back and wish I had taken those chances. I never want to say “I wish I would have”. I want to tell people about my stories of cross country road trips, how I did that 10-mile hike just to watch a sunset and how the craziest adventure of all was letting myself fall back in love. For you, your fear may not be based on travel or love but rather weight loss, your career or your family and a million other things, but friend I beg you to look fear in the eye and start living.

I challenge you today to stop what you are doing, jot down some big crazy things you’ve always wanted to do. Next, start making a plan to do them! I may not have all the answers to how to overcome your fears, but I can tell you that once you truly start living you’ll never regret it!

The photos in this blog are from Dream Lake, Rocky Mountains National Park. This was one of the hardest hikes I’ve ever hiked. The hike wasn’t hard because of distance (it was only 2.5 miles) but because it was uphill because it was at 10,000 ft altitude and because it came a snow storm. I won’t lie at one point I was scared! I got stuck on the side of the mountain and had got off the trail because of the storm and I was freaking out a little! Just like that moment, life can paralyze us, it can make us think twice about doing those things our hearts yearn for, but I promise once you reach the top of that mountain the view will be worth it!