Finding Heaven on Earth

I have just spent 8 days in the wilderness…

Please do not be entirely impressed…we had electricity and plumbing and even a DVD player…we had air conditioning and a refrigerator…we did not however, have phone or internet access….what a blessing….I may have found heaven on earth…

Spending all of this time with my family, I have had the bittersweet remembrance of what it’s like to have a life. When I got there, there was no way to reach outside civilization and no way that anyone else outside of here could reach me…all there was to do was BE…be there, be present, be happy, be a mother, be a wife, be me.

recharge your heart and soul

I did not wear makeup and I did not check my email every 15 minutes. I did not look up on the internet what a huckleberry looks like before and after it is fully ripe, though I tried to, out of habit. I just ate fresh huckleberry ice cream after a 30 minute drive to a high mountain town known as ‘Huckleberry Heaven” I could use my computer to write, to play music and to read old journal entries, but that was about it. I read an entire book, a lovely book, purely for entertainment…it had nothing to do with business or fitness or anything-ness…it was just a lovely book written by a lovely person, who I intend to contact to tell her just how much her book made my life so much better.

I listened to my children tell me about the dreams they’d had the night before…while we turned their beds back into a table or a sofa so that we could eat breakfast. I laughed until my sides hurt with my children and my friends and my in-laws while we played games that I never seem to have time for. I stared at my husband across the campfire while he told stories the way he used to, while he laughed and smiled and while my children looked at him like he was Superman himself. I walked alone in the forest in the mornings and listened to the choirs of birds and enjoyed the paintings that the sunlight made as it filtered through the hundreds of different kinds of trees. I listened closely when my little son told me that he could hear God’s heartbeat in the waterfall.

I have come here every year for 13 years…and, every year I am still profoundly surprised at the untouched, raw beauty of this place. We arrived first, then friends came, one carload after another…and when many of them were here, and we started on a walk down the hill to the water, I looked around at them and thought “if we get to design our own Heaven after we die, this will be mine…in this place, with these people” I realized that I was so utterly filled with bliss at that moment, enjoying the kind of beauty that only God could have made…His plants, His sky, His water, His children…

And I realized how important it is to take your most valuable things…the things that you could hardly live without…for me…my husband, my children, my creative spirit…and go to a place where you can all just BE without a single interruption. Where, every day, you pick up just those 3 things and nothing else is there to complicate or compete or dilute…and you detox from all of the other things that you have been juggling for the last year to two years or ten…or maybe it’s just been months…it’s been too long no matter how long it’s been.

slow down and really live your life

Because, when you do….you will start to remember what life is all about…what matters and what doesn’t. But, especially what matters…what whispers when everything that doesn’t matter yells….what needs you to stop and listen…what needs you. What you need. And, you’ll see how very little it is, but how very very big it is…that it is really everything.

And, when you get home…you will be more careful on that first morning after you wake…you will be careful what you pick up and what you leave on the table for next time or for never…you will hold those precious things in the careful way that they deserve to be held…

And, then, as all humans do…you will begin to slip. And, it will be time again to take those things to a special place so that you can all remember again.

remind yourself that you do not have to do what everyone else is doing

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