Some people trash dresses or gowns after heart-wrenching breakups.
Heather Hibbard had another idea.
“I went through a really bad breakup in December and was absolutely heartbroken,” said Hibbard, a native of Stewartstown who is now living in Texas. “When I went home to get over it and be with my family, I was thinking of ways to get back to feeling myself.”
Enter Becca Benoit, of Columbia, who runs Becca Rose Photography.
“My friend, Becca, said I really needed a pick-me-up and said, ‘Why don’t we do something crazy,’” said Hibbard.
A few weeks ago, in late January, when Hibbard was home in Coos, Benoit suggested they climb to the top of Table Rock in Dixville, in the thick of winter.
Hibbard then one-upped her.
“I was supposed to go to a New Year’s Eve Party with my boyfriend and didn’t get the chance to wear a dress I have,” she said.
Accompanied by her family and braving temperatures in the low teens, Hibbard climbed to Table Rock and took the opportunity to change into an emerald green evening gown, pose for photographs, and pop the cork on a bottle of champagne.
“I kind of trashed the dress — that was the feeling I was going for,” she said. “Now, it’s covered in good memories.”
All around her was loving support.
“My family is so supportive and they were trying to help me heal,” said Hibbard. “They all hiked with us, including my niece [Arya], who is two-years-old.”
Her mother, Rose Hibbard, kept her warm with a blanket between camera shots and sips of champagne.
Also along for the hike and celebration were Hibbard’s sister, Carrie Glover, and brother-in-law, Matt Glover, who, in his backpack, brought some celebratory beverages of another kind in the form of beer.
“We were up there for probably 30 minutes,” said Hibbard. “It was cold, but I’m used to that … Mom had music on her phone, fun, empowering songs, and we had a great time. It helped me so much.”
Hibbard, who for the past seven years has lived in Houston where she works in the oil and gas industry, is also used to adventure and has gone on solo travels to Costa Rica and to Kenya in Africa for a 12-day safari.
Closer to home, she has visited Portland, Ore., as well as Miami, New York City, Rhode Island, and Bermuda, “random, fun places” that she chose after committing to new, regular adventures.
Some adventures have been academic.
The 2009 Colebrook Academy graduate who earned a bachelor’s degree from Husson University in Bangor, Maine, in 2014 will be graduating in May from the University of Houston with a master’s degree in Business Administration.
The following month she celebrates her 30th birthday.
Annually, Hibbard visits home about a half dozen times a year, often for a weekend a little longer, but in January she stayed for two weeks.
Now recovered from the breakup, Hibbard, who is getting into modeling with Benoit as a photographer, is thinking of her next North Country adventure.
“My family and I went up to Mt. Washington last year and it was so windy at the top,” she said. “I want a long, puffy dress that flows in that wind.”
The recent hike to Table Rock remains satisfying.
“I’m a North Country girl at heart and this is just what I needed,” said Hibbard.