Colorado: Hiking, Yoga, and Living in the Enough

There is a path and I will be filled.

For the past two weeks, my family and I drove and drove and drove to, in my own words, get our hearts back in the mountains of Colorado. I thought the mountains held the answer. Tall, unrelenting, opportunistic, the mountains loomed over us, beside us, outside of us.

Outside.

I just wanted to be outside. To feel the sun, sun, sun on my face and to hear the wind and the wild around me.

I needed space and peace and…whatever it was that I needed. I needed to not be home. Home was so normal. Lovely, but entirely too ordinary. I needed to not be there. The smells, the sights and sounds, the every day dust that contained little bits of us – gross, I know but true –  was too much. I needed to not be so close to me. Just for a little while.

We made it to Colorado. I discovered a few things.

  1. Two out of my three children hate hiking. Hate hiking. This does not bode well for Colorado living.
  2. I could hike forever. I needed to walk. I needed to move. I needed to finish something. To come to the end of my not needing to walk. This did not agree with the aforementioned noted #1.
  3. I can’t sleep. The sun starts peeking out at four in the morning. The altitude does not encourage sleeping in. It’s like a horrible wakeful drug that you can’t refuse even if you want to. I tried my hardest. I think once I was able sleep in till 7am.

What I also learned is that I came along with me. I didn’t mind it so much, except that I was hoping I would be a little different because I was in a different space. It’s a poor expectation but there it was.

What I think I really expected to find was my calling. I was open for it at least and made room for it. Something would happen, right? I would talk to someone. Experience exactly what I needed to. See something that would be the catalyst that would launch . . . me. . . us. . . anybody!

Nope.

It didn’t happen. In fact, the further we spent time in the mountains, stepped deeper into a trail, remained with the connections we’d made, we found ourselves where we weren’t supposed to be.

It’s not that we shouldn’t have come to Colorado. It’s just that it wasn’t the place for us.

Loving Warning: If you are expecting the complete opposite (You belong here!! This is what you’ve always wanted!! This is what you have always dreamed of!!) and it’s not what you get, this experience can be very, very hard.

I had experienced something similar a couple of years ago. Alone, miles from my family, I attended an event where I thought I would find my people, my place, my heart’s fulfillment. Wrong. A day in and I was sobbing to complete strangers because (and I didn’t tell them this) this is not what I had hoped for and this was not where I belonged, and I had already committed to four days of fun. The experience was invaluable and incredibly humbling.

I had to admit that what I thought I wanted, wasn’t what I thought it would be. 

So, Colorado was a bit like that. Lovely, breathtaking, and kind of hard to explain. It’s gorgeous, until I got up close, in it, unable to sleep, and missing home so much that I wanted to throw up.

And, so I found myself in a trauma sensitive yoga session, deep in shavasana, grasping to the words the instructor declared over us:

There is a path and I will be filled. 

I turned to Jesus.  Realizing that my path did not lay in this direction, I submitted all that I could.

I’m wide open for whatever you have for me. 

I pictured the wide and open spaces of Colorado. And, I started to cry.

But, it’s hard. It’s hard to be wide open. 

I felt His agreement.

It’s hard to be open when what you thought was yours, isn’t. When what you had hoped to be exactly what you needed turns out not to be. When being wide open requires your whole heart and makes that sweet heart vulnerable to everything – storms, droughts, too much sun, too much rain – too much.

And yet…

Just enough.

I’m home now. Back on my porch swing, I remind myself of the treasures that I’ve brought home with me:

  1. This is where I belong. It’s where I need to be. It’s not what I had always imagined but right now, this is where God has me. I am embracing it.
  2. This is enough. My life, my work, my family, my friends, my current place in this world is enough. I put so many demands on myself and everything around me to be more. More. MORE. Instead, I’m making space and time to let everything around me be enough. I am enough. This is enough.
  3. Push deeper into healing. One gift that I received was the revelation of why I hate getting out of bed in the morning. It springs from my past and would probably be better expressed at another time, but I realized that my wounds are affecting me far more than I realized.

Side note: There are no birds in Colorado. Okay, maybe a few but beyond Magpies and some robins, I was deeply disturbed by the lack of birds, at least in variety.

So, if you’re asking, Colorado was good. And, hard. And, exhausting.

At least now I get to sleep in.

God bless the Kentucky humidity.

I’m home.

Photo Credit: Gratisography at Pexels.com

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