When my husband and I traveled to New Mexico this spring, we stopped at church rummage sale. (Isn’t this what everyone does on vacation!?) Out in front of the church was a spiral contemplation garden. We had never experienced one before, so we gave it a try. I sat on a nearby bench and watched as he journeyed to the center and back out again.
Then it was my turn.
The guidance on the sign said to hold a question or concern with which we needed clarity in our minds as we walked the spiral path inward and back out again. My mind usually races with a thousand things from which I can't choose because I want to be certain I choose the exact right thing. So, I decided to focus on nothing and try to let whatever was going to come to me, come.
I put one foot in front of the other letting the sounds of traffic and passers by fade away, focusing on the shapes of the rocks in my path, the crunching sound of them under my feet, the warmth of the Taos sun on my shoulders. Before I knew it, everything I had entered the garden with fell away and I was at the center. Still not quite sure of the message I was seeking, I looked up.
What I saw was my husband sitting patiently on the bench where I sat moments before, waiting. He was reading something, probably one of the shop brochures we had picked up along the way. He was allowing me the time and space I needed to find whatever it was I was looking for in that moment.
That was when it hit me.
Be in love.
My heart warmed and my eyes welled up.
Be in love.
Don't just love or be in love with something or someone. Be in love, live in it. See what is right before you and always with you. It is a choice, as I wrote about here on another day.
We had gone to New Mexico seeking space and clarity and reconnection after facing the painful loss of a pregnancy. I was angry and struggling and trying to not harbor bitterness and resentment in my heart. I needed space, time away to find some sense of peace again. Somehow I knew in the mountains and the wide open spaces of New Mexico I could find what I was looking for, and though I didn’t know exactly what that was, I knew I would recognize it when I found it.
I had been missing out on what I had right before me. The ability to see beauty and love in my life was clouded by the loss of what should have been, but is not.
I was no longer going to miss present joy and love, for the past or the future.
I began to feel peace again and the vastness of the landscape expanded my soul, giving it space to both settle and soar.