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Today was the first solid day of rain that I've experienced yet. We've had a few wet and misty days but today, once it started, it rained the rest of the day and I'm entirely soaked through. Despite that, it was the most beautiful day for me. I found myself in between laughing at how ridiculous this was and crying. I cried because I missed the family that I once had. The family that has now fallen apart. I thought about how I haven't seen Gramma and Grampa in so long because of the whole mess of the divorce. And I cried later in the day thinking about all the anger I've had toward my parents for having a difficult childhood. But today I realized what seems like such a simple thought, but to me it was profound: my parents' did the best they knew how to do. I'm 23 and my parents were 26 and 30 when I was born. I would not have any clue to be a parent at my age so I finally understand they were just being parents the best way they knew how. Lastly, I cried because I thought of how thankful I was for Cam, Kate, and Ashley and all the love and support they give me. It was a transforming day for me and I loved it. I feel such a weight lifted.
I ended up hiking to Standing Indian Shelter tonight. It seems that my body dies around 9 miles. Up until then I finally felt like my body was capable today and was mostly without pain. I'm happy to not be going any further tonight. I am hoping and praying I can get to Franklin without pain. I experienced my first thru-hiker quitting tonight. Eggs, who I've met a few times, gave me some of his food an announced he was going to quit once he made it to Franklin. He left after dark and in the pouring rain. I couldn't even fathom quitting this early.