PATHFINDER

So I took a mini-hike in one of my favorite places.  What I love about this place is that it's so big that it's never the same hike.  As I ventured, I became very aware of the path(s) I was walking on.  They seemed to morph as I went.  First I was on a very wide cushy one that felt safe and well traveled.  After a little trepidation, curiosity and my sense of adventure won as I decided to veer off onto a narrower stone path which looked  private and mysterious.  After traveling for quite some time, all the while the path narrowing, I came to some very steep stone steps - at least 30 of them.  Up up up I climbed only to find an even narrower path at the top that traveled right along the edge of the mountain I was on. OK...Scary!  Heights and I don't really see eye to eye...Never have, but at this point, I was committed so I sucked it up and kept it moving.  I gotta say as scary as it was it was pretty thrilling at the same time.  Finally, the path zigzagged away from the mountain's edge.  I had a big moment of pride for not succumbing to my fear... Yay! Go me! Woohoo! I did it!

INSERT SCREECHING HALT SOUND HERE

The brush suddenly got thicker and the path got even narrower, bumpier and treacherously uneven.  Now stepping super cautiously, I forged on, hopeful that soon it would change for the better.  Just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, I was met by a huge branch lying straight across the path totally blocking my way.  I stopped and stared, now feeling completely foiled and pissed at myself for taking what clearly was "the road less traveled" for a reason.  I thought about turning back, surely it was time to throw in the towel and admit my defeat.

Just then, the scream of 2 geese pulled my attention to the right.  They were a few feet off the path just walking around on the grassy mountain.  It took a minute before it hit me, "Duh Gem, you don't have to stay on the path, you can actually get off it for a second to go around the branch."  It seems simple I know, but had totally eluded me.  Sometimes (as was the case for me) we are so consumed or stressed out by a situation that we don't see other options.  Anyway... I veered off the path and around the branch then down a steep set of stone steps and onto a less narrow path which took me to the very edge of the mountain where I encountered a view of the most lovely, peaceful lake.  After taking it in for a minute (or 5) I looked down to see one more set of wide stone steps that led right down to the lake.

I sat at the lake for about an hour smiling, the sun beating down on me, watching the geese swim and it was then that it occurred to me that I had just been taught an incredible lesson that I want to share with you.  As you travel along the path of life, there will be times when it will get narrow, mysterious, dark and scary.  You'll have to climb up out of your fear and the road may get even bumpier, rockier and narrower for a bit and there will sometimes be obstacles which may seem too big to get past. 

LISTEN UP HERE PEEPS...If you clear your head just a little bit and look outside the lines, you will see that you have other options and can probably make your way around any obstacle that seems in your way and just when you think you've reached the edge, take a moment to really look and you will realize how far you've come, how well you did and that you've come to a much better place than you'd ever imagined simply because you didn't let fear get the best of you and you kept moving forward.

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