Or, alternative title, ‘Realisation’.
I’ve written before about my love of the Lake District but, sitting here surrounded by trees, hills and birdsong, I know it’s more than that. It’s in my blood. I can count back seven generations of farmers on my Dad’s side. I was brought up as a farmer’s daughter: helping Dad with crops; horse riding, shooting and animals; hearty home grown (and caught) food.
I wish my photography skills were better because the photo above does not give justice to wonder of my surroundings this morning as I walked my dog: the hills glowed with the morning sunlight.
Yesterday, exhilaration filled me as I ran – yes ran – up the slope to Castlerigg stone circle. I felt alive. At peace. Content.
I’m a spiritual person. I don’t have the religious faith of some but I believe I something. It’s hard not to when you see the wonders of the natural world or the coincidences of life that hint at an existence much more than our undeveloped brains can comprehend.
Years ago, I was sat in a Spiritualist church listening to an old man as he spoke about our spirituality and our link with this world and the next. I’d always been a sceptical Spiritualist but this speaker was particularly good.
I didn’t get a message as such, but part way through the evening he walked over to where I was sat and said quietly “You’ve some tough times ahead. Be strong. Your loved ones will support you.” He stepped back and continued speaking to the audience. His private message, so unusual in that context, was sincere and heartfelt. He later sought out a friend of mine and again told him to look after me and that I would need my friends.
The past few years have been the most difficult of my life: ill parents, depression, Separation, death. And what occurred to me this morning, in the clarity that this beautiful place always brings, that whether I believe that these are the lessons planned for me so my spirit learns or merely that this is life – science and inevitability – is irrelevant. The point is that I must learn from them.
So, what have I learnt?
- I’m am both stronger than I think and weaker than I thought. But that’s OK.
- My family and friends are the most important things to me. Obvious, but easily forgotten.
- Everyone let’s you down at some point, intentionally or not. It’s human nature.
- Putting others first, then, is false economy – the only person you can rely on is yourself. Put yourself first.
- I don’t have to stay on the path I am on. This is my one life and I need to be happy in it. I can make changes just as changes can befall me.
- Modern culture is superficial. I’ve never been a part of it (no social media in my life!) but I am still influenced by it. No more punishing myself for my flaws. They’re normal. A part of me.
- Go with my heart. It’s sometimes more knowledgeable than my head.