Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Life Lessons And A Story From The Woods

Sometimes I'm amazed by what I see when I'm REALLY looking--with my eyes and heart wide open! How 'bout you?  Sometimes what I see, really see, turns out to be a game changer--a transformative moment.  I just had one of those while taking a little solo hike in the woods yesterday.

My husband and son where at a preschool nature program, and I thought I was really close to a little lake where we've hiked before.  {Here's where you can think flat and easy trail--maybe a half mile--a little time to just hang out alone in nature.}  I felt like I was walking farther than I remembered walking before, but all I was thinking about was sitting on a little bench by the lake.  {Maybe I should have been paying attention.  Maybe not.}

At first I thought I was just seeing little bushes and rocks in the path.

Then I started to REALLY see.  Was there a message here for me?  For me to pass on?

I kept walking down the path.  There had been a storm the night before, and a tree had fallen across the path.

Here is the blurry road block--wish I had a clearer pic!

As I approached the tree on the path, I wondered what I was going to do to get around this obstacle.  I found another message.

As I continued I found other messages that were not meant for me.  Some were even carved into trees. 

Sometimes it's hard to let go of messages that are really intended for other people.  

I continued seeing messages all around me.  I found myself looking up, looking down, and looking in all directions.  I started expecting to see messages. 

I almost forgot that I was nowhere near the little lake.  As I was panting up and down hills for a couple miles, {so much for the flat short trail} I saw lessons that were more than words.

There was a crew cutting up fallen trees, and I doubted that I was even supposed to be on this path, but it was passable.

I felt ripples going through me as my heart was lifted.

I saw an amazing bent tree, and as I walked I repeatedly thought, "Bent, but not broken.  Bent, but not broken."

I wanted to know the direction of the trail, before I got to the point of needed the information.  Sometimes I even felt frustrated that I couldn't read the trail markers until I was right on them.  This made me think lots about fears I have for next school year.  {Reminder:  I will know what I need to know, when it's time to use it.}

So many messages in just an unexpected little hike!  I never did see the lake, until I had finished the entire trail and turned onto the trail I had originally thought I took.  Once I got to the lake, it didn't seem like such a big deal after all that I had seen.

And as I walked away, there was another message for me:

I love this little line: "Acceptance is the answer to all my problems today." {from the AA Big Book}

And then I walked back to the bench where I was supposed to meet my little family, and I received the last little lesson on an acorn:

Love is the only thing that really matters in the end!

And that is my little story from the woods!

What life lessons are you learning these days?

What unusual classrooms have you recently experienced?

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