Momentarily, of course– just a breather at a summit after a challenging climb, but I am not going on any time soon. Nope, I am settling back– leaning against my pack– letting the sweat cool from my brow and noshing on trail mix.
This is a plateau and I am gonna rest here for a while.
The odd thing is I could not possibly have imagined being here– and that is also why it feels so much like hiking a mountain and landing on the view spot– as that sensation, too, feels both abrupt and delightful.
For all you longtime readers (and having met a few of you at the Fair Saturday night– I guess you are out there!– whoa– love it– thank you for being part of my life in whatever weird osmosis we have created here through online journaling), you know I have been in something of a process, lo these last few years.
It has felt, particularly in the past 2-3 years as if I have been pushing, driving, navigating the north face of the mountain which kept presenting me with an expanse of sheer cliff rock— as I felt called to manifest Squam, find my tribe, connect with my best self, create the life that resonated most deeply, most authentically with me.
It is a good journey, a happy journey. It is also grueling, painful, surprising and can make me weep with frustration.
So it was with the sweetest of awe that I found myself walking the path at Deephaven on Saturday morning– Saturday, September 17, 2011– and feeling the vibration of a bell– a giant, old, deep tolling bell– sound through my body.
Everyone was in class, sunlight poured across the lake and across the path I walked — perfuming my steps with sun-warmed, crushed pine needles. I had the walkie-talkie radio in my hand and as I walked, I stepped into an old familiar pattern. This is my role. This is what I have done now for four years. I know exactly what needs to be done– we have it dialed in– I feel strong, confident and relaxed.
In that moment, I had the clearest sensation of being integrated, in alignment. A sensation I have never, ever had before. It felt precisely as if an entire chapter of my life had ended and that I was walking across the fresh white sheet of a new page. That chapter was from the time of my senior year in college until this past summer– a fairly hefty chunk of time, to be sure.
Walking that path, two days ago– I was completely, totally in my body. Squam is on its feet and now simply needs steady nurturance. I have created a home for me and the dogs that meets my needs for safety, creativity & community. This morning at the dog park I was walking with another dog owner who calls me “New Hampshire”– none of us know first names– we all know each other by our dogs– and he said to me, “are you an artist?– you look all bohemian.” Now, this is a guy who’s got a hairstyle straight out of Eraserhead– but you know, whatever– I was wearing a furry, white vest and knee-high boots. And I responded– “um, mostly I write.”
And then, when he asked me what I write, do you know what came out of my mouth?
I said, “I’ve done all kinds of writing, but now I mostly run these workshops and work on my novel.”
I know, right?
It was the oddest thing because I had never even had that thought before let alone ever said those words– but it was the most natural thing in the world because– that is what I do.
Happiness– sneaks up on you just when you think you can’t go a step further– just when you think it’s all a big flipping myth and you have been chasing windmills. You come around the bend, the trees part, and you find yourself gazing out and across the distance you have traveled. And wow, does it feel good.
P.S. After 10 days apart (where they were muchly loved up by Dave & Oliver and happily prancing about at Soliden), my dogs and I are reunited and sweetly ensconced in our wee apartment here in Provy. This photo is for AISLING– the prettiest girl I ever did meet– with shining eyes and a shining spirit– I really hope I get to meet her again. She came to the fair Saturday night– and she loves Henry and Daisy. So this goes out to her, with love and light.