Greetings one and all…
I am writing this fall reflection from one of my favorite places in the world—the mountains of Colorado. Over the past week, I have enjoyed the fabulous fall colors while hiking hither and yon. Today, I’m happy to remain indoors as a cold front moves through bringing rain and snow to our state. Not surprising that we are experiencing all seasons while in the mountains. Tis the season for change. After a couple of days of winter, the forecast is for sunshine and warmer temps. So I have my hiking boots by the front door and ready to go when fall-like temperatures return.
My time in the mountains is such a blessing. As noted in previous blog postings, the past two years have been personally challenging. The death of my brother and a dear friend. The death of two beloved pets. And a serious health condition that laid me low for several months. As is often the case, these trials and tribulations serve to enhance my appreciation of the blessings in my life—the simple yet sacred moments sprinkled throughout each day. Consequently, my senses are on high alert. I am constantly reminding myself to pay attention, to be aware, to soak in and to savor every moment. No doubt, you have experienced the same thing in the aftermath of the adversities in your life.
When hiking, I am particularly aware. The fall colors are extraordinary this year. The Rocky Mountains are known for the vibrant, golden color of the aspen trees. But aspen trees are not monochromatic. Many of the trees are a brilliant shade of orange, verging on scarlet. Other trees are a bit late in the turning process resulting in leaves outlined in gold. And some aspen leaves are ruffled—adding a different dimension to the characteristic aspen shape. The variations are captivating! So much so that I have been collecting leaves on every hike—very much like shelling on the beach. A fabulous way to enjoy and to embrace the fall season in the mountains.
As I reflect on my experience this past week, I recognize the many benefits of moving through life aware, awake, and attentive. I am more deliberate about engaging the moment—doing things that are life giving rather than life draining. I have an enhanced sense of gratitude for the sights, sounds, critters, and people in my life. And I have an overwhelming appreciation for my life—I am SO thankful for SO many reasons. I am also determined to apply this mountain-top experience to my day-to-day existence upon my return to Denver. It is far too easy to fall back into the daily routine, mindlessly going through the motions. So today, I am committing to engage every day WIDE AWAKE! I want to squeeze the life out of LIFE!
Living intentionally is a worthy—and lofty—goal. Every day, Life asks how I choose to live through the good times and the bad. My fall experience in the mountains highlights the importance and the blessings of responding to Life intentionally, thoughtfully, and thankfully. Lesson learned. Living intentionally on a daily basis is the challenge. If inspiration is required in the days and weeks to come, I need only look at the amazing aspen leaves gathered this week. One glance will transport me back to the mountains and a life-giving way of being. A blessing indeed.
I look forward to the ongoing conversation. If you have specific questions or concerns related to your caregiving experience, I would love to hear from you. Until the next posting, I wish you and yours countless blessings…jane
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