Saturday, August 31, 2013

Missing the Mountain

Sometimes it's just the mountain and me; no iPod, no phone, no companion. At times like that, I find myself lost in thought, and it is almost as if I am performing a walking meditation.  It is a time for reflection, and immersing myself in the moment.  When I listen to music on my iPod, I may be able to go faster, but I miss the birdsong, the sound of running water and the movement of rocks and vegetation, every time I startle the rabbits and deer and birds. The smell of sage and sweet mountain air fills my nostrils. Hiking brings me to a place untouched by technology, and cares, and worries.

This is a picture of a deer that stopped grazing long enough for me to take its picture.  It wasn't disturbed by my presence, and I felt privileged to share this moment with him.

I have missed hiking this summer.  In June, my rheumatologist scared me out of doing any activities that could potentially cause more damage to my back.  I've had three months to think about it, and I have determined that I am not going to let fear dominate my thinking any more.

It is the one activity that I can share with all of my children and my husband.  We all benefit from being together outdoors.  I don't know if I will ever be able to describe fully what being immersed in nature does for me.  All I know is that not having that experience lately has taken some of the luster out of my life, the wind out of my sails.

Living a fear-based life is living a life unfulfilled.  That is not the life for me.  This week, my husband has tried to help me come out of a brief bout of depression.  He has given me space and time.  He recognizes that these things will help me find my joy again.  When he asked me if I would like to hike, I felt myself perk up a little.  When he asked which trail I'd like to try, he already knew the answer.  The waterfall trail above Cherry Hill!  I have a feeling that once my hiking shoes are kicking up dust, my life will fall back into place.  My level of happiness seems to coincide with the level of activity in my life.  It's time to get busy!

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