I have just returned from a week in Nature.
I took a break because I recognized that I didn’t have enough fuel in the tank to get me to the end of the year without risking a serious case of compassion fatigue (aka Burnout). In the past, I would’ve continued on like a blank-eyed automaton, accommodating those I serve (my wife, my children, my clients) while my internal spaces crumbled. As I get older I am becoming wiser to the signals.. and my rigid adherence to outdated “operating systems”, like working myself into the ground in service to some antiquated dictum no longer serves me, nor those I love.
I dislocated myself from the known and took refuge far away from any other soul. I sat alone in silence on the stoep of a cottage in the Cederberg while the hours drifted by and I thought…and I thought, wandering around inside of myself.
I forced my self to stand still, no hiking or riding after new experience, just to sit and observe.
During those silent days I massaged the raw, bruised heart-wounds that accumulate as part of being Human. Slowly circulation returned,feelings, even to numb extremities that I hadn’t thought about, or allowed myself to feel in years. My battle weary psyche began to thaw… and something deep shifted into a new space. My relationship with who I am deepened just that little bit during that sacred time…
I filled a notebook with reflections which have already begun to droop once plucked from their source.
During the last night I drank some fine red wine and danced naked like a rejuvenated madman around a roaring blaze, I broke my silence with whoops and laughter that celebrated being alive, I shouted into that cold, dark night.
Nature is soul-therapy, it opens my heart and stills my fierce mind. It takes me into a place where I can catch a glimpse of lost pieces and perhaps befriend once again, the reflection I see.