Today, I walked into the woods with a veil over my eyes.
I was lost in thought, lost in energy, lost in my head. I headed to the highest point I could find to try and clear the noise, release some of the frantic static that was sending my cells boomeranging off my insides in a chaotic dance of rearrangement, an internal revolution.
So many things have changed, are changing, evolving and exploding. Sleeping giants are waking up after years of hibernation, and they’re coming out of the caves roaring… in the best way possible. I find myself antsy in my skin, feeling like I could jump out of this organic casing and spread my energy across the sky in a wild cascade of lights and bursts and explosions, like I could create my own version of the northern lights with all of the sparks I feel racing through every molecule of my body.
I stayed in this place of chaos, my heart racing, my head struggling to find a place of rest. I closed my eyes and leaned against a boulder that was surprisingly warm, supporting me as I leaned into it, allowing its weight, its solidarity to hold me up. I listened to the birds calling, the leaves rustling, the trees swaying and talking the way they do.
I opened my eyes and took off in a direction I’ve never explored. I just let the wind take me, rustling my hair and reassuring me of the movement of nature, of energy, of time. I started heading towards a favorite spot—a stream that I love sitting by. I made my way in a familiar direction, walking in a daze for a few minutes. About half way there, I realized I didn’t need to reach that spot. I stopped, turned around, and started retracing my steps.
And that’s when it happened. Everything looked different; a path I’ve taken almost a hundred times, running, walking… maybe I never give myself a chance to really take it in, appreciate it as I’m jogging through. But this time it looked completely alien to me, and I even took a look around to make sure I was following the white spots painted on the trees, marking the trail.
Then the sun came out. It had been overcast up until this point, but the light broke through the clouds and illuminated this old/new path. The trees and dirt took on a new luster, the rocks, a new hue. I was walking through some alternate universe, some bizarro path that couldn’t have possibly been the one I had just walked. But it was, and I was seeing it for the first time.
“All in due time. See the world through different eyes. All in due time. The shadows will give way to light.” ~ Killswitch Engage
I followed the trail to the entrance and then made my way to the pond abutting the other entry way. There’s a bench and a small podium containing information on the habitat and the beaver dams that created the pond. Even this spot, a spot I frequently sit to send and receive Reiki to and from nature, looked new. The water was glistening and the level was higher; the wind sent soft ripples across the surface. Leaves were falling off the trees and landing in the ripples, slowly making their way like little boats, solo in their journey (but we know that’s not true).
It occurred to me how amazing and miraculous change was, just by observing all of these subtle progressions. It also occurred to me how quickly change happens, with such subtle swiftness, that we hardly ever notice. How fast life moves, and how quickly we can become numbed by the rat race, and how that numbness can lead to blindness. How we become blind to ourselves, our hearts, our lives. And how sometimes, radical change is of the utmost importance in resetting our consciousness and our perspective—our forgotten hopes, our lost dreams. Our stagnant lives.
Nature has an amazing way of awakening our innate intelligence, of giving a voice to the internal promptings we try so hard to drown out. And when it comes down to it, what’s more difficult—making a choice or choosing not to choose, not to change, not to progress and ultimately, not to live life to the fullest?
I always feel light when I leave the woods, like a heavy weight, an energetic burden has been lifted, transmorphed by the very trees and plants and leaves that make it possible for us to breathe. I understand the importance of being engaged in life, but I also understand the profound significance of unplugging and disengaging from the energetic warfare we put ourselves through and become embroiled in, just by living. My excursions into nature are my therapy, my release. This is how I center and ground myself and find the perspective that can so easily slip away.
In this place, I find my truth, and sometimes, a sliver of peace that I try to expand on each and every time I check my worries and baggage at the trail entrance. Nature shows me that I already know the answers, and provides me a safe haven to be still enough to listen.
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Ed: Brianna Bemel
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