I will always be happy.
I made myself that promise three years ago.
Pulling myself off of the cold storm-soaked soil, I found the strength to push on.
Weeks of heartache, anger, hurt, disappointment, complete and utter devastation, I found myself by the creek, my creek. My creek knew every whisper of my soul. My creek saw the transition of my euphoria to my deep dark abyss I was scraping the earth to escape from.
Sage, my owl, showed her mighty presence to me in my hours of desire. She gracefully danced across the sky, gliding through the air. Showing me grace and the ability to fly with my own wings.
The Osage Orange Tree provided me shade on those summer days and fall nights. One of the strongest and hardest woods, used as bow wood for our ancestral mighty warriors, showing me strength. Producing a beautiful fruit with an entangled maze pattern, showing me complexity.
Through the storm, the sunflower’s scattered seeds grew wild and tall. Full of light and color. Demonstrating the ability to grow through the toughest kind of weather. The kind that breaks you down to your soil, disrupts your newborn roots, pushes you to a new place where you can finally grow. And demonstrating patience—it may take time to grow, but no one can refute that gloriously radiant and vibrant bloom.
Mother Earth’s skin, that deep dark soil. Cold to the physical touch but warms the soul like a blanket around an infant. Comfort. She teaches me to be comfortable in my skin as she is in hers. To be content with whatever comes my way.
My creek—my sweet flowing, ever changing, finding new paths to explore, refreshing life of Mother Earth. Washing away all the pessimism and unconstructive words.
The journey of this creek is mapped out with spacious gaps of calm water followed by slender branches of small rapids. Teaching me that change is welcomed-it makes you grow. Stagnant waters don’t produce clear, clean, life sustaining substances; they produce disease, distrust, depression.
All of this raced through my mind, as I lay on the storm-soaked soil, weak and broken.
Unsure of where to go in my life, or who to be because all that I had known was washed away in the torrential downpour. Mother Earth wrapped me in her arms—showed me all that was beautiful. All that was pure and real. All that would bring myself back to happiness.
In that moment—I found my hands, nails caked in mud from gripping the ground to escape, palms down—prepared for departure. My feet gently planted themselves into the Mother. And as if Sage was there to fly me away, I ever so gracefully pulled myself out of the darkness. No longer would I sit in the darkness. I let it go. I let the light in so I can see all of Her beauty.
I let love and understanding wash over me.
Many moons later I owe myself that promise I made on that stormy noon, I will always be happy.
I wrote this piece while listening to “Obsidian” by Trevor Hall! Check it out:
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Catherine Monkman