I like to think of life as a journey and myself as a bold adventuress—I grab my map and compass and set out on a path every day.
I generally have a good idea of where I’m going, though I can never really know for certain.
During a recent journey, I did not realize I was going down a path I had already wandered, until I started to feel the prickly thorns and found myself sinking into the same muddy quicksand I once escaped from. In that moment I felt like a failure. A lost traveler with a broken internal compass. What’s wrong with me? Travel is supposed to be about moving forward!
As I began to softly sink into a muddy pit of despair, I remembered what I did the first time I found myself there.
Oh, that’s right, there were a couple old vines hanging from that tree branch. The one that was in reach had thorns. The sturdy and safe vine was just out of reach, but if I twisted my left leg like this I could grab a hold of it…and I would be free!
Last time, I recall I struggled for a long time before I even realized I was in quicksand. Last time, I grasped onto the vine that had thorns first. It took a long time to break free, and when I did, I was so shook up and exhausted I took no time to explore all the other paths that led away from there.
The universe was offering me an opportunity to practice what I’ve learned. What’s the point of growing if I never get a chance to put wisdom into practice, anyway?
There have been many times I have found myself going down a path I never expected, going to a place I’d never dreamed of. Likewise, there have been times I have thought I was far beyond a place, yet I must have taken a turn and looped back to a spot I left behind.
To repeat the paths of our past is not a failure, nor proof that we’ve not grown. It is a moment to measure how much we’ve learned.
And so today, I will practice gracefully exiting quicksand and exploring all that which may hold adventure. And I implore the same for every adventurer and adventuress out there.
Author: Marie Brown
Image: Caleb Jones/Unsplash
Editor: Katarina Tavčar