Ok. It might not look that way, but the tell-tale signs are there. Tracks in the snow, for example. Not a lot of mammals are out and about when the temps drop below -30C, but with temperatures rising, activity is on the rise. Including this mammal. i get out in the winter, but a little extra sunshine brings motivation after a long, dark, cold winter.
Sarah decided to haul out her snowshoes a couple of months ago, and she had a good trail going through the brush. But she went down south with our girls a while back. The very next day, something went wrong with my hip and i was very limited activity wise. So Sarah’s trail filled in with snow while she was gone.
Upon her return, Sarah headed out to the trail, but was stymied by huge mounds of snow. Walking in waist-deep snow, even with snowshoes, is a taxing job. So i started the trail again and made a set of snow steps so she could get up to the top of the snow.
That woman is really something! She eventually stomped out her trail again. Kind of messed with my head, as i could not do that distance. First step to disaster: John gets motivated. Not thinking motivated. Emotionally motivated. A whole different matter, i’m sure you would agree.
Second step to disaster: John does not take time to plan out his activity. My friend, Ed, made me a walking pole, which is great for treks like this (bad knee, etc), but i neglected to take it with me. So, while Sarah was in town yesterday, i strapped on my snowshoes, and with partner Bella for company -whether i wanted it or not- i set out on the trail.
With the snow packed somewhat, the trail was easier than my last trek. Third step to disaster: John builds confidence and gets a little cocky.
Making good time, i noticed Sarah had cut off across an area, instead of following the former trail. Laughing to myself, i figured Sarah had started to get tired and, rather than turning back, decided to cut across. Not this guy! What’s the sense in having a trail if she isn’t going to use it? So i decided to stomp out the longer trail. Pretty sure i had planned some clever comments for when i got home. It’s one of my gifts.
i boldly stepped forth into the great unknown. i’m a Trekkie after all. And i sank. Deeply. Into the snow. Up to my chest deep. And of course i fell forward into the silky softness. It was weird. I’ve never fallen so slowly before. If you have ever been in deep powder, you know what i mean.
I might mention something else at this point. Know what a walking stick is good for? Checking depth before you go forward. Helping with balance, that sort of thing. Just so you know.
Please try to picture this fat guy roiling around in the snow, like a badly wounded animal. And Bella, god bless her, thinking i was playing a new game, jumped on me from behind, immobilizing my snowshoes.
It took me a few minutes to realize i needed to move out of there, as i was not really uncomfortable. i was already winded, however, and lying down in cold weather is not the best option, so i got Bella to move and managed to finally get my snowshoes turned around under the snow. Climbing out- all clever remarks forgotten- i set back for home. Let’s just say i made it home, got all my gear off, and my body parts are healing themselves. i am busying myself by grinding spice rubs and planning gardens instead.
i suppose this is my point. Blame is an easy game. i am not talking about how past experiences and adversities still affect us and so we have these underlying feelings and such we carry along with us through life. i am talking about blaming everything and everyone else for our problems, instead of making things different. Maybe it was Sarah’s fault somehow… i am kidding, or course. i did it. i put on the snowshoes, was ill-prepared, got cocky and ended up in a difficult situation.
Ever go to a therapist and then ignore or dismiss whatever advice they give you? (honest hands go up) Or have you done things which you knew from the beginning were not a good idea? (more hands…preach it brother) . The present is our responsibility. We may feel like others have “made” something happen, but that is not usually the case. We get trapped in a negative loop that never changes.
Maybe not past adversities, but the present is more open to our control than we think. Attitude makes a huge difference. i can testify that this is true in my experience, and can be true for you as well. So i propose we talk a little walk on the good side for a while and talk about some of the more practical ways we can help ourselves through this often troubling life.
Let’s work together to make some positive changes in our lives.
St. John of the Asylum