When I was a little girl, I used to look up at the stars and wonder. I would hold my hands up to my eyes cupped like binoculars trying to bring them closer so I might see their twinkle a little bit brighter. I would stand on my tippy toes and lean towards the moon to see if I could hear its whispers and read its thoughts. When I was satisfied with all that I learned I would lean back down upon my heals and smile, knowing that yes everything would eventually be okay.
When I was a little girl I would jump in the cool dark waters of the lake and lay on my back so I could rest a moment and feel the earth move gently below my body. I would flip backwards into the water, blowing bubbles out my nose so that I could breathe deeply once again and know that I was just the same as everyone else. When I felt the air rush back into my lungs as my head popped up onto the surface, I knew that I was supposed to be me and you, you.
When I was a little girl I would hold back the prickly pine limbs from scratching my face, smelling their sweet sap and step stronger determined to keep in sync with the others as they climbed higher and higher up the mountain. The spongey moss cushioned my feet as they worked double time across the bare rocks and over the roots and fallen branches. This was my mountain to climb just as much as it was theirs.
When I was a little girl l was grounded and secure in my constant effort to be connected. Somehow the wonder of life was more than enough to fill and satisfy, I was wise beyond my years. As I grew and became more aware of the world around me, my innocence was shed and taken far away. The simple joys and beauties that used to lasso their arms around me and pull me close, no longer could be heard above the noise of keeping up, falling down, success, and failure. Somewhere along the way I forgot the simple pleasure that existed from just being in the moment, and aware of my surroundings. Some say the first step in waking up is to simply choose to do it. “It’s easy, just do it”.
When I lay my head down on a strange pillow tonight, the whirlwinds of a new path swarming through my mind, I will close my eyes and try to find those stars, cool waters, and pine limbs buried deep beneath the years of striving to always do and be better no matter what life threw at me, no matter what my choices resulted in. When I feel my body starting to relax and my breath grow heavy I will breathe in deeply knowing that when I was a little girl I simply had to look, feel, and smell and the world was mine.