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Ending my Camino: What Now?

Camino(s) past & future
Upcoming, March 31-May 6 2018
#1
Last month I finished my Camino, going from Pamplona to Santiago with some bus assistance due to a knee injury. Even with my injury, I had a fantastic time. A life changing experience and even now it feels a bit odd to look back and know that I did it. But now, I can't wait to go back. More that, I find myself missing the Camino far more than I expected. Sure I'm happy with my own bed and good water pressure and no snoring or 5am bag rustlers. I miss the lifestyle, I miss the foggy peace in the morning, and I miss Santiago with an ache I didnt anticipate. I've discovered something wonderful, but that is meant to be transitional. How do people cope with missing the Camino?
 

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William Garza

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, The Jakobsweg
#8
RX
Camino therapy
Keep your training up...go for long walks by yourself sometimes
Eat something simple and remember to be thankful,for a bit of bread and coffee
Tire yourself out in a selfless labor one,day a week so you can remember ehat a clean soul feels like
Smile at a stranger, they will wonder who is tjis oerson and why are they happy
Be kind to yourself
Let it all go at the end of the day...your labors are done and you need rest to carry on tomorrow

Keep walking
 
Camino(s) past & future
10 x Frances complete, SJPDP>Santiago>Fisterra>Muxia
1x Via De La PLata y 1x Camino Levante
#9
Last month I finished my Camino, going from Pamplona to Santiago with some bus assistance due to a knee injury. Even with my injury, I had a fantastic time. A life changing experience and even now it feels a bit odd to look back and know that I did it. But now, I can't wait to go back. More that, I find myself missing the Camino far more than I expected. Sure I'm happy with my own bed and good water pressure and no snoring or 5am bag rustlers. I miss the lifestyle, I miss the foggy peace in the morning, and I miss Santiago with an ache I didnt anticipate. I've discovered something wonderful, but that is meant to be transitional. How do people cope with missing the Camino?
I have walked Frances 11 times and The Levante 1 time and the Via de la Plata 1 time, i always know before i enter Santiago each time that i am going back the next year, i get a depression if not..the camino has made my life worth living. Santiago itself is nothing to me, just a tourist hotspot, but getting there along the trail is beautiful for the mind.
 
Camino(s) past & future
April (2015) SJPdP to SdC; Porto to SdC April (2016)
#11
@CirrusTheCloud, many members of the forum will - and have - reply that the solution is to start planning your next walk but I think this advice sometimes overlooks the gifts that the Camino gives us. You describe walking to Santiago as a life-changing experience, so it is understandable that in trying to adjust to life away from the Camino is accompanied by the 'effervescence', for want of a better word, that sometimes follows on from the return home and all this fizzing exhilaration needs time to settle so you are better able to reflect on the meaningfulness and learning gained from the walk to Santiago . @mspath provided a link to a previous thread that offers thoughtful comments and wisdom that may be helpful, especially the post by @SabineP. Perhaps instead of making immediate plans to return just now, take the time to let what you have brought home with you in terms of new perspectives, greater tolerance, increased self-worth, openness to others and a joy in venturing into the unknown with trust (and some planning of course). The wild birds sing as sweetly wherever you live and the flowers have the same beauty, as the poet WH Davies wrote:

What is this life, if full of care, we have no time to sit and stare.
No time to stand beneath the boughs, and stare as long as sheep and cows.
No time to see, when woods we pass
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see in broad daylight, streams full of stars, like skies at night


Walking the Camino gives us that time.
My gifts from the Camino were all those things but also religious and spiritual prompting a reconnection with things previously gone adrift, but I do not assume that framework of motivation for you or others. Just wake each day and treasure where you are and the blessings that life has bestowed and of how the experience opened your eyes to things that before the Camino you merely glanced but did not see, visually and metaphorically. Perhaps consider it as a treasured book, paragraphs of which you can return to whenever you need to reconnect with what you learned about valuing yourself, treasuring life and our interaction with other people.
But after all that I have no doubt that you will walk to SdC again, so Buen Camino!
 

falcon269

no commercial interests
Camino(s) past & future
yes
#12
How do people cope with missing the Camino?
I am part of the "do another one" crowd, but I think that is a bit facile. I would suggest that you try to find the reason that you may prefer the camino to "real life." The answer may be as simple as "I hate my real life and need a break." Or it may be a lot more complex. There is no correct reason, but if you can find your reason, then you will be walking next time with a completely different attitude. For example, you will have decided that you hate your job and just need to get back to the basics of wake, walk, eat, wash, and sleep. It may not make you hate your job (or other situation) less, but it may at least be able to tolerate it with an improved outlook!

Buen camino.
 

J F Gregory

Portugal Coast - March 2019
Camino(s) past & future
March-April,2016 finished
March 2019 the Portugal Coastal Route
#13
The Camino is a journey to be cherished. But is not he only journey. Since our first Camino we have journeyed on foot in Africa, the Middle East, Poland and the Chez Republic. Within the next year we are going to continue our pilgrimage back to Spain which route hasn't been decided yet.
" Life is a pilgrimage".
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013-Frances SJP-Finisterre, 2015 Camino Le Puy-Santiago, 2017 Portugues Lisbon-Santiago 2018 Norte
#14
Last month I finished my Camino, going from Pamplona to Santiago with some bus assistance due to a knee injury. Even with my injury, I had a fantastic time. A life changing experience and even now it feels a bit odd to look back and know that I did it. But now, I can't wait to go back. More that, I find myself missing the Camino far more than I expected. Sure I'm happy with my own bed and good water pressure and no snoring or 5am bag rustlers. I miss the lifestyle, I miss the foggy peace in the morning, and I miss Santiago with an ache I didnt anticipate. I've discovered something wonderful, but that is meant to be transitional. How do people cope with missing the Camino?
Go climb Everest or K2. That’s what I do after every Camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (Spring '17)
Primitivo (Spring '18)
TBD (2019)
#15
What is it about your life that the camino changed and can you implement some of those changes now that you're home?

On camino, there's a lot of time to think about life and be inspired and make decisions about the future (that's what I do, anyway). If you came up with some ideas for the future or some changes that you want to make in your life, then now's the time to put those things into action while the spirit of the camino and the reasons you made those decisions are still fresh in your mind.
 

kdespot

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés SJPP-SdC Sept-Oct 2016
#17
See if there is an organized group of Camino pilgrims near you. Not sure where you're from but in the USA we have American Pilgrims on the Camino with local chapters all over the country. Part of the difficulty of coming home is not having people around who understand what you've experienced. Friends are gracious and supportive for a while but if they haven't done it, they just don't get the lingering longing that remains (for me, two years later I still long to be on the Camino almost daily). But getting together with other pilgrims, hiking and sharing stories, really helps.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Spring of 2018.
#18
I finished mine on June 8th. Since then I've been looking at other walks. Eventually I will do the Camino again but for now I'm planning other walks. The Jesus Trail in Israel is one.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Vezelay (2017)
#19
Last month I finished my Camino, going from Pamplona to Santiago with some bus assistance due to a knee injury. Even with my injury, I had a fantastic time. A life changing experience and even now it feels a bit odd to look back and know that I did it. But now, I can't wait to go back. More that, I find myself missing the Camino far more than I expected. Sure I'm happy with my own bed and good water pressure and no snoring or 5am bag rustlers. I miss the lifestyle, I miss the foggy peace in the morning, and I miss Santiago with an ache I didnt anticipate. I've discovered something wonderful, but that is meant to be transitional. How do people cope with missing the Camino?
Dear Cirrus (what a lovely name) - your journey continues, whether you’re walking or not.
 
#20
Last month I finished my Camino, going from Pamplona to Santiago with some bus assistance due to a knee injury. Even with my injury, I had a fantastic time. A life changing experience and even now it feels a bit odd to look back and know that I did it. But now, I can't wait to go back. More that, I find myself missing the Camino far more than I expected. Sure I'm happy with my own bed and good water pressure and no snoring or 5am bag rustlers. I miss the lifestyle, I miss the foggy peace in the morning, and I miss Santiago with an ache I didnt anticipate. I've discovered something wonderful, but that is meant to be transitional. How do people cope with missing the Camino?
I will never forget the morning after my first Camino, I got up and was moving slow. I thought, well Ron, of course, you are tired after walking so many days. And then I realized that if I had been walking that day I would have been filled with energy! Instead I was slightly depressed and thought, "so what now?" Even then I never dreamed I would return. But of course, that is exactly what I did. I've now walked 4 times (including the Portuguese Camino last year). Each time I thought I would never return. Yes, it is addictive. But there are worse addictions!! :) I would say two things. One is that you said it was life changing. Let those life changes sink in deep and in that way you will be continuing the Camino. Secondly, don't hesitate to go back. My own experience has been, that even if I went with a conscious intention, each Camino has surprised me in what the solitude and contemplation bring forward. I think the operative word for me is "receptivity." If you go with conscious receptivity, you never know what will come to you in those long walks day after day after day. Each one of my Camino's have been "life changing." And my life is much richer because of it. Am I going back? Of course! :) This time, though, I plan to walk Fisherman's Trail and Rota Vicentina, southern tip of Portugal along the ocean (not part of El Camino de Santiago). Although destination is usually a part of a pilgrimage, I've been to Santiago 4 times. I no longer need a formal destination. The walk itself is life changing. So, whether you return or not, "Buen Camino!"
 

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