Exploring the unknown

Exploring the unknown ~ Crystal Gornto | HeartStories

I’m writing you today from the loo.  Not kidding.  I’m sitting on a towel, on the toilet lid, with my feet propped up on the bathtub, in a tiny motel bathroom.

Stay with me and you’ll learn why that detail matters.  

We’ve been coming to this island every summer since I married my husband (over 13 years). So my kids have had the extreme privilege of growing up with big chunks of their summers spent at this beach.  It’s been fantastic.  And even though we stay two weeks, they always wish we could stay longer.  So this year, I figured. . .why not?!  I told them we couldn’t stay in the same fancy place, but we could stay and check out the rest of the island.

And so we did.  

The rest of our family left the island on Saturday.  The boys and I rented a Kia Picanto (that will forever be known as “The Picanto”).  We loaded it down with our stuff, piled all three of us in the tiny front seat and drove over to check in to The Sunshine Suites.

The boys love it here.

We are sharing a room with a built-in kitchen.  We’re sharing this tiny bathroom that requires you to squeeze through and close the door behind you to use it.  And we’re taking turns sleeping with the tornado twister at night (I won’t name any names, but I suddenly feel terrible for Noah, who slept with the nighttime twister for the last two weeks!).  The best part?

We are exploring parts of the island we’ve never seen.  

We drove 45 minutes to the North side of the island to explore the crystal formations in caves, way back in a jungle, under the earth that have been around for hundreds (or thousands?) of years and only recently opened to exploration.  We stopped at a local restaurant called Over The Edge, that had a “poop deck” (?!?) that was literally hanging over the edge of a cliff, over the ocean and the food was amazing.

The thrills have been non-stop. 

We turned down a sand, tire-track road with no sign, leading into the jungle and wound up on a beautiful black coral cliff overlooking the ocean where the waves were crashing in.  We’ve pulled off the road at abandoned motels with empty beaches and scavenged the most interesting shells.   At “Cemetery Beach” that is quaintly appointed right in front of a waterfront cemetery, we donned our snorkeling gear and snorkeled far out into the blue in search of the sunken ship that is laid to rest there.  (we didn’t make it out quite far enough)  We snorkeled the dark reef where we usually enter the water for our night dive and got to see an octopus!

But guess what?

We’ve gotten lost.  We’ve gotten hot and sweaty.  I’ve had to enforce boundaries with consequences.  We have LOTS of mosquito bites and I might or might not have sunburned cheeks, where the sun don’t usually shine.  Although it’s been exhilarating, it hasn’t all been as pretty as my Facebook photo album (that I hope to upload one day) will look.

That’s the beauty of exploring the unknown.   

From the first day of “HeartStories”, my coach Michelle, has instilled in me the imperative of walking boldly into the unknown.  Knowing fully, that you will be surprised by what you learn.  It might be refreshing and comforting.  Or it might be a little scary and painful.

But the only other option is to stay safe where you are.  

You can keep living life on repeat, going to the same places, with the same people. Doing the same things, year after year.  Keep getting what you’ve been getting.  Stay the same person you’ve always been.  Stay on the same path you’ve always been on.

But I believe you’re here because you want to stretch and grow.  

You want to have healthier, more fulfilling relationships. You want to be the light in this world that only you can be.

You want to live your heart story

To do that, you’re going to have to walk some unknown paths.  You’ll have to turn down some unmarked roads.  You might have fun and you’ll definitely work hard.  You might even get to write to your friends straight from the loo!

But believe me, the beauty you discover will be worth it.  


No one else can choose it.

No one but you.

to more love,


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