Saturday, December 4, 2010
Memories and healing along a Dirt Road
How many times as a youth, did I walk this road? How many miles were logged on a bicycle up and down this narrow lane to nowhere and everywhere? The woods that line this road have been home to many grand adventures. Saving homesteaders, discoveries were made, new trails across the wilderness were found.
In these woods, walking along the mirade of paths that meander through there is a peace. A lovely quiet where most sounds are those of nature. Sounds of civilaztion muted. Often I have walked these paths seeking the peace and healing of the heart.
As a youth I waded in the creeks, drinking from the places where the water ran fast, or from where my grandfather had sank a pipe deep into the ground where a fresh water spring waited. No bottled water will ever touch that taste. Searching for crawdads in the creeks, chasing tadpoles and catching turtles all along the creeks that crisscross through the woods. Wandering the woods, because I did not fit in with my peers. Wandering the woods and finding a large part of my balance. My family gifting me with the rest. Immaturity and innocence can be a curse or a gift. All that time spent wandering the woods have helped to hone my ability to handle alone time and enjoy it.
As a teen, I spent the time there as I sought to find myself. Struggling to grow, straining against boundaries, arguements that sent me along the trails to regain control of my temper. Running as fast as I could muster to work the anger out. Knowing my way in those woods, as well as I knew the back of my own hand. Never afraid to go alone, never afraid to go deep into the woods. Enjoying the ability to disappear into another world away fron the one I struggled to fit into.
As an adult, home from a failed marriage I looked to the woods, but did not follow the trails I love. An adult that thought myself too big for the woods. Too mature to need what was there.
As an adult facing cancer I returned to my beloved woods. Walking the paths that I had loved as a youth, paths that were filled with memories that came flooding back. The quiet of the woods my healing peace. Even after the many years that seperated my walks, the memories have not dimmed.
Riding on my grandfather's big red tractor through the woods to the power line in search of the best wood's dirt. Walking the road with dad at Christmas time looking for the best evergreen tree. Sitting in a patch of ferns that grew over waiste high only in one spot, a spot that had to have a spring somewhere underground that just never broke the surface. Thoughts of those challenges of riding bikes down the hill trying to avoid riding right into the creek.
Walking the paths I have discovered many gifts waiting to be found. Flowers I remembered, but thought long died out still grow there. During those long summer days attracting butterflies and bees along with the occasional praying mantis. Ground hog and snakes, deer and hawk..owl that sit in the trees and watch you pass by. Thousands of photos later, hundreds of miles walked with an uncounted number of hours spent walking I know my contentment. I know my peace.
These woods, these paths in the woods growing along the side of this narrow, dead end dirt road is where I find the best of quiet times. It is easy to leave all the noises and concerns of life behind as I walk and listen in the stillness. I feel the healing love, the assuring peace of my Lord walking with me there. Nothing is a distraction, nothing is a disturbance, nothing covers the voice of peace and love.
That I find here, on this road- that I call home.