Day 46: Into the Woods

Today felt like a million different days all jammed into one. I shed tears, had hugs, giggled merrily, walked, sat, ate, and meditated. It was a lifetime wrapped up into one spectacularly rollercoaster-y day.

It began with Ant and I cuddling before rushing to get ready — we lost a tent stake, the stove, and the stove’s bag with the lighter in quick succession. We bickered and made up just as fast. Today was the day that Ant was to turn around, and goodbyes are never easy.

We squeezed each other tight, after finding all of our lost gear, and Ant’s eyes let out a few drops of precipitation, that quietly rolled downward.

“I wish you would go back with me this once,” Ant whispered to me. 

 I headed up the trail, torn between two regrets. I let a little sadness dribble down my own cheeks as I tromped along, wondering what I should do. Who was I? The person who kept the team moving onward toward our goal, despite my emotions? Or the person who put my partner’s needs first, making a tough time a little brighter? What was the right decision?

I ended up the person who deferred, as Rainbow Dash let me know about the road that led to Kennedy Meadows that I would get to right on our anniversary, an opportunity to see Ant.

The trail meandered through beautiful woods and meadows today. As I followed the well trodden path, I meditated on that age old question. Who am I? What kind of person do I want to become?

The word “love” came to me again and again, and I wondered if the path I should have taken was 180 degrees around. I thought about walking in love, falling in love with the trail, with myself, and with Ant all over again in this new light. I thought about how the more love I have in my life, the more it seems to attract.

I thought about the ocean of love between me and Ant and my parents and my friends at home, and how that doubled and doubled in my heart until there was enough for the whole of the wilderness I have passed through and will pass through and won’t ever see and all the people I have met and will meet and won’t ever meet. I thought about how this could be a pilgrimage, that my purpose could be to make my heart large enough to hold all of the universe in a great bubble of light, it could be to learn to be big enough to take in all of the suffering and breathe out only love. 

 And then I stopped thinking, and fell deep into conversation with Dash, following a million different streams of thought. And we walked on and on in the peace and dappled light of this strangely tall meadow or strangely short forest. And we laughed and inside jokes until we passed through a bad burn, and Dash’s sadness swelled, and I tried to walk with love filling each step.

And on and on we went, until we found a small spot right in the middle of this large world. And now, done blogging, I’ll be content just warming my sleeping bag with my love, and maybe sending Ant a little warmth too.