Coming Home

The birds were out today. For the first time in a long time my mind was quiet enough to hear them. The last few months have been so noisy that I truly thought that there weren’t birds left in Washington. But today, there they were, tiny and flitting from branch to branch, their fragile skulls ornamented with yellow plumes.

I was out today, too. I’ve spent a long time lost. I’ve spent a long time hiding in relationships, jobs, distractions. I thought I had vanished. But today, there I was, silent and strong and true, waiting after all this time.

Today was the first day in six and a half years that I’ve been single. I thought that I had lost home. But today, I realized home has been right here this whole time.

The truth is, I’ve been in an epic love affair with the outdoors and my body moving in it for years now. And that is not nothing. That is, in fact, everything.

I’ve been unable to write since I left the PCT. But today, surrounded by trees, watching the softness of moss against log, rock against vine, sun against fern, it is impossible not to. Everything in the universe cries out to me to put it on paper, to send it off into the digital ether to find eyeballs that understand, or simply just get it off my chest.

Today I took a walk in the woods and found that everything has actually been exactly right, exactly how it should be, this whole time. Despite all of my excess thinking and penchant for diversion, I have been whole and home and safe and surrounded by birds and streams and the universe this entire time.

What a relief it is to come home, to have never left.

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