Sometimes I get lost. I don’t mean out in the world, out in landscape. But, rather, lost in terms of any sense of how I fit within the world—unclear about what gives my life meaning or why I exist, where I belong. I lose my center. We all do. I know I am not so special in this. But it never feels good when we are—lost that is—does it? When the land shifts beneath our feet and there seems to be nothing solid.
Something I have found over the years that helps me tremendously is nature. If I go out into the beauty and silence of the natural world I will always find a sort of bread crumb trail back to me. And from there the rest is relatively easy.
Last night I ventured out into the silent darkness of a cloudy night, just me, alone in the land grant. The forest wrapped itself around me and told me that I am not alone in the world and I am “not beyond love” as David Whyte has so beautifully written in his poem, Sweet Darkness. “Time to go into the dark/where the night has eyes to recognize its own/The night will give you a horizon/further than you can see,” he says. And it did me last night.
I used to be afraid of the dark. Now it offers me solace and space and a sort of healing. It gives me that far horizon further than I can see. And there is something very grounding about being in that much space; that much solitude. I feel my feet upon the earth. I hear my breath, feel my heart beating rhythmically, blood flowing in my veins. And in these moments I understand and remember that I am part of the whole.
Ahhhh. I need nothing more than this—to feel that ancient collective recognition breathing here inside me. And while I am singularly alone and am all I ever really have, I am all this as well, and never really alone. I matter (we all do). I am no longer lost. I am found.
Love to you all,