I failed to see the blaze somewhere along the way, and when I finally looked up to see where I was I didn’t recognize my surroundings.
If you’ve ever accidentally walked off a trail in the woods you’ll know this feeling. You think you’re following a clearly marked path, only to come to a grove of trees, plants, thick shrubbery, or dense forest where the “path” clearly ends. You pause for a moment to find the trail; you look around thoughtfully; you’re not sure when you left the well-worn path, but you’re definitely not on it now. So you start trying to retrace your steps. You thought you knew the way so you weren’t using your GPS and you don’t have a compass and map. How long have you been walking off-trail? How far back? Which way? As you first try one route back, then another… they all look the same. You’re lost.
I grew up hiking, camping, skiing, rock climbing and generally spending time in the outdoors; but over time those interests took a back seat to other pursuits. First drugs and alcohol; then family; then work; then more drugs and alcohol. Before I knew it, things that shouldn’t matter were all that mattered. I was lost: no compass, no map. I’ve lost more than a few things that should have mattered to me. And while I wouldn’t yet say I’m found, I would say that I think I’ve found a way, the trail back home.
This blog traces that journey–back to where clear bright blazes point the way toward mental and physical health; this blog is my invitation to you–to follow me back home: a place I hope never to reach. Because then the journey would be over. And the journey is what it’s all about.
So, get out there.