Spirit had told me to go take a walk in the woods. So, on a cold and overcast afternoon in late October I did just that. I happen to be in Garrison, New York, leading retreat and found a few moments to myself before leading the next class.
I took off my hiking boots and socks and began to walk. At first slowly, and then at a bit more quickened pace. I made my way along the path that was filled with stones, crunchy leaves, sticks, brush, vines, and moss. Stones and moss.
Some of the stones were jagged and painful, but, I continued on. With each footstep, it soon dawned on me why spirit had told me to walk barefoot in the woods:
With each step, I noticed how, because of the pain and discomfort of sharp and jagged rocks, my feet were always naturally seeking a soft place to land.
Tears came to my eyes as I realized how beautifully this was a metaphor for life. We are all seeking that soft place to land, those warm arms to fall into that hold us, that deep heart that holds us in sacred space when we cry, and that soft landing that catches us when we fall. And even more beautifully, that the universe is always offering that soft place to land.
Whether it is the moss upon the earth, our beds, a piece of chocolate*, a moment in silence alone, a moment in reverence with the divine, a moment of remembering the divine within our self, or any of the other soft landings in life, there is a soft place to land and a place in which you are unconditionally loved and celebrated for all that you are, as you are. And remember, there is a place exactly like this in your own heart. There is a place in your heart that offers forgiveness, that speaks of love and acceptance, and that always offers you a place to softly land no matter how sharp and jacket the journey feels.
What I have come to feel is that most often in life, these places, people, ideas, these entities that embody a soft landing, are most often the strongest foundations from which we move forward in our lives.
That good friend that always has your back in moments of trouble; that song that always lifts you up when your spirit is down; that mantra that resonates and sings within your mind again and again when your thoughts are pulling you down; that place at the shore, or deep in the woods, or along the river that always welcome you back again and again; that dish that’s been passed down within your family from generation to generation that always nourishes your belly and heart; that book that touches your soul; that dance party with your kids(ok, that’s my soft landing, lol); that moment of repose as you hold the steeping tea or coffee between your palms; the welcoming of the fire as it warms your feet… These are the soft landings that remind us of who we are innately and truly. These are the soft landings that give us strength that runs deep and rich within our veins; that moves us to shine our Light brightly into the world! Deep and rich.
This is why I am using this story as intention in my classes this week. And this is what healing circles offer. A soft place to land where you are in a co-created and safe place that is truly welcoming. Where the jaggedness and uncertainty of life can be brought to the table. Where you are wholeheartedly embraced as you are. Where you can dance if you want to, or just lay down your bones to rest. It’s all welcomed to process, to nurture, to honor in order to transform. Healing circles are a firm foundation from which you can grow.
I invite you to join me and Liz Moyer in the next offering of circles:
Hibernation for Healing: a journey of storytelling and embodied experiences for processing change.