We have a saying around our house…Life Is Good.
It would be easy to focus and dwell on the negative in my life. Like everyone else, I have challenges and stress, uncertainty and pain. But having been in some pretty dark and scary places before, I am very appreciative of the light when I see it.
I’ve been so frightened of the future that I went down on my knees and prayed in the middle of my horse pasture. I was so unsettled and distraught that I couldn’t continue the walk to feed the horses that morning, tears were streaming down my face as I got close to God and to the earth.
That day, ten years ago, I opened my eyes and was able to see and feel the beauty around me. It was a spring morning, much like today. Trees were budding, flowers blooming, and the air had the unique smell of the sun and new life.
What I learned that day, and have kept with me ever since, is that I have to open my eyes to the good.
I’ve found myself saying to friends and family members recently “no one is all good or all bad”. It is a simple truth, but one I need to be reminded of at times.
We have had some surprises recently in my family. Family and friends that were held close betrayed that trust. Emotions have been raw with the sickness and subsequent death of my dad on Monday. Unpleasant discoveries about the true nature of those we trusted have put us on a very unpleasant roller coaster.
I don’t have a horse pasture anymore. The deck looking out over houses in West Little Rock does not meet my need for solace. So I headed over to Pinnacle Mountain.
Wednesday was a beautiful spring day. As I was climbing up the “hard” side of Pinnacle, I received a phone call from my brother with more bad news. I took the call, processed the information, and then started climbing again. At the top, another call. More bad news. Again, a few moments to process and then I started down the mountain. Running down the “easy” side, I had to focus completely on what I was doing because I know it would be easy to trip on one of those rocks and execute a face plant on the mountain.
As I was running the base trail, trying to get the negative thoughts out of my head, I received yet another phone call with even more bad news. I stopped to take the call, and then started walking. Instead of pushing myself to run away from the stress, I made the conscious decision to slow down and feel. I cried, I muttered to myself, and did a full wallow in self pity.
Then, I looked around me. I saw the sun streaming through the trees, glistening on the water. The flowers and trees blooming. I took several deep breaths, smelling that unique smell of pine and dirt and sun.
Life Is Good.
Yesterday, I was short on time so I went up and down the “easy” side. It takes about 45 minutes. As I was starting up I received a phone call. This time, the call was good news about the future. So I trotted up and down the mountain, mostly zoned out but with a smile on my face.
We had dinner on the deck, Keely dancing more than eating.
Life Is Good.
Whether the phone call is good news or bad news, I have a choice on my climb. I can focus on the rocks, on my fear of falling (and of snakes) or I can take deep breaths of the clean air and look for spring. It is always my choice.
Life Is Good.