I think I’m an over thinker. I mean, well, I know I am. I can analyze, hypothesize, prophesize and write amazing fantastical stories in my head. Some of them true, others just plain crazy.
I’ve spent my busied lifetime riding the glorious highs and soul crushing lows of operating with a very sensitive soul. I’ve spent countless hours sitting alone and reflecting over salty tears and steaming tea, on what I could have done differently. I’ve grown increasingly tired, feeling forced to consider boarding up my heart instead of being “allowed” to be led through life by it. I’ve become afraid of the cold reality of friendships and partnerships having been involved with people who fear my thoughts, my reactions and my beliefs.
At some point in life I decided to stop and try to accept who I am. That is one of the most terrifying things I have had to do. What I’ve come to understand about myself is that I’m a challenger. I challenge myself, the system, my confidants and my beliefs – every single day.
I challenge my heart to be more open, free, peaceful and warm. To forgive when there is nothing but resentment, hurt and betrayal and to let my heart break without fear of imminent death, as often as it needs to. I challenge my body to be strong, steady and pristine. To get better with age, to push through what my mind says I cannot do and to take me to places that some can only dream of seeing. I challenge my mind to learn, grow, analyze, understand, engage and compile. An organic computerized filing system of encyclopedic proportions, one in need of a Shepard for the flock of thoughts that sometimes whirl out of control.
On my most recent trip away, I finally became a part of my happy place. This could seem like a tiny feat but no, it is not. Knowing where your happy place is or what it consists of takes a lot of time and thoughtful consideration – but not forced.
In 36 years I have never put too much thought into independent happiness. I loved dance for decades and thought that was it. I loved love and partnership and thought that was it. I lost myself in books and recipes and thought that my kitchen could be the spot. I have suffered the highs and lows of life – and there were a LOT of lows – not having a place I could go to that would ALWAYS be there. Unconditionally. One that said nothing but gave back tenfold.
I’ve come to understand that my friends, family and lovers are not meant to provide me with unconditional care, peace and plenty. I have faults and idiosyncrasies that make me unlovable from time to time, that turn my vulnerabilities into liabilities and my heart into a ticking time bomb.
What I am blessed to know now is, to find my safe and happy place I only need me. I spent over 6 hours and 25 kilometers walking in the desert over 2 days. In this time I had all the space, solitude, peace and beauty surrounding me to feel at ease enough to consider all of the happenings in my life of late and how I was going to navigate through them.
I meandered through snake dens, wild pig habitats, giant prickly cacti and over rocky outcroppings blasted by wind and rain. I walked slowly and methodically, I ran, I slipped and fell and I stood in awe.
I saw that in all of this, my journey in life could be easily compared to my hundreds of hikes through all the peaks and valleys I have been blessed to see on this planet. For no matter what happens on the trail, how scared to death I am of getting eaten by a grizzly bear, falling to my death in an azure crevasse, losing my way in the unforgiving desert with no water….I still return. Determined to see more, learn more, gain skills and see things that melt my heart and take my breath away.
Wandering the mountains with my wild heart and frantic mind is how I cope. How I came to sometimes understand the people around me and how I eventually learned that every encounter I have on this earth is beautiful and something to be looked forward to, conquered, respected and revered.
Thank you travel. Thank you mother earth and thank you me, for having the patience and courage for long enough to finally find my spirit medicine.