I took this picture a few summers ago while exploring nature in Colorado with my boys. This bridge that seemed to appear in the middle of nowhere, was captivating to this wild-hearted girl. To date, that trip is one of my favorite trips we’ve ever taken. I could have lived without the 24-hour airport delay, but the exciting road trip that ensued afterward was such a fantastic adventure. We stopped several times to explore streams and trails. We took the scenic turnouts, just to see the views. We traipsed across rocks under the bridge instead of walking across the bridges.
We were free-spirited gypsies, even if only for one week.
Exploring unknown areas is one of my favorite things in all of life to do. It’s not that I’m an avid hiker or ANYTHING like that. I’m simply drawn to the adventure of the unknown. I love following the trail that curves beyond view up ahead. I love creating a new path through the woods that looks like it might lead somewhere interesting.
But it’s not always fun and easy, even though the pictures make it seem that way.
More times than it’s worth counting, that pull inside me has often resulted in a much longer detour than first expected, a jeep stuck in the mud, or a slightly more serious unforeseen circumstance. There have been many times I wished I would’ve seen that small stream running under the brush line that wasn’t quite visible from my seat in the jeep. Or that the dry, cracked earth on the path ahead was really that awful Texas quicksand, masquerading as a safe surface for traveling.
Or that the “shortcut” we chose was actually the VERY long way home.
Each time things didn’t go the way I planned, I’ve learned an invaluable lesson that I wouldn’t have learned without the mistake or the detour. It may not have been fun. In fact, most of the time it’s utterly miserable. It’s usually extra hot right about that time and we’ve run out of water. There are often moments when I question how we’re going to make it out this time. I feel ashamed of my stupid mistake. I feel like I’ve wasted valuable time and resources.
I’m tempted to give up, throw in the towel, and quit.
But the woman who has been journeying the unknown, in both my life and work for quite a while now, knows deep down that things are exactly as they should be. That each detour took me on a path I needed to travel. That each unanticipated moment of feeling hopelessly stuck, brought about the kind of growth that doesn’t happen without pain. And so, I choose to keep going, to keep getting back up and exploring the unknown. To keep pushing forward, even when it’s through tears, with trembling hands and shaking knees.
It’s a soul-level trust that each step of the journey was needed for where I’m going next.
“Your journey has molded you for the greater good. It was exactly what it needed to be. Don’t think you’ve lost time. It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to the now and the now is right on time. “ ~ Asha Tyson
Like much of what I write, this message is a reminder for me, just as much as it is for you. If I know I need to hear it, I trust you do too. So if you’re feeling stuck today, keep going. If you’re questioning how you’re going to make it through, don’t give up. If you’re ashamed of the path you’ve been traveling, dig deep for the lesson you needed to learn.
Get back up and make a different choice with the wisdom you have gleaned.
Your journey has molded you for good. You needed it to get you to where you are now.
Now is right on time.
Breathe that in for a minute. Trust it. Take the next step.
to more love,