Yesterday afternoon I drove down to Prairie Pond Woods to resume the "businistry" of Heart by Nature Retreats. Upon arrival, I heard several phoebes calling and before I went to bed a barred owl hooted from the woods. In between, I took a walk and a friend from down the road invited me to dinner at their cabin. It was a lovely way to begin this next season of writing and hosting retreats for women.
Walking the paths in the afternoon sunlight with Cyon, the beginning of a blog post I wrote in 2005 came to mind:
"As I approached the wooded trail-head at Spring Valley Wildlife Area, I noticed something about myself. For whatever reason, I was not focused outwardly at that moment, but inwardly, and sensed a slight physical change, a minor elevation of heart rate perhaps, the tiniest release of adrenaline maybe...the kind of change you might experience seeing a good friend approaching unexpectedly. The moment I stepped over the chain separating woods from parking lot and on to the path, I was aware of the great expectation of discovery and a settling calm inside."
This is how I feel being here again; looking forward to whatever the days bring forth. Like a trail head I have never been down before, I am unaware of what is before me. Is it a straight path? A winding trail? Is it steep or wet, and are there interesting things to see? Each time someone ventures down any trail, old or new, mysteries await.
The trails in my life have always been a little rocky, winding and less traveled. They were built by the pain of inner wounds, friendship, beauty, God, more pain, nature and healing. They have been maintained by solitude in the wild, wrestling prayer and love.
So every April I open my heart, the retreat house, and our nature trails so that other women can come to find their hearts in nature. It isn't the most popular activity to do in our culture. I know that. It may be scary for some and others may find it a foolish waste of time. But I am an April fool...so when the creatures begin to stir and the earth magically greens-up in small bursts...I just want to share it with all the other fools out there!