Getting a little more JOLLY, a little more GREEN, and a little less GIANT.
12 October 2012
Choose the Right
This morning I woke up.
It only got worse from there.
With several spontaneous things happening the night before, the kids' homework had not gotten done. In a last ditch effort to encourage them to be good students, I pressed them to finish it before breakfast. This resulted in fits of frustration for all parties. I felt like such a schizophrenic parent as I pushed my children out the door with a hasty kiss and an "I love you!" after all the anger of the morning. (Anyone else feel like your children's self esteem is sacrificed for the sake of getting everyone out the door on time for school?)
With the bustle and the pandemonium of the morning my ambition for the day was spent. I didn't want to clean. I didn't want to exercise. I didn't want to care. I found myself googling the hours of operation for the nearest Mrs. See's candy store. And it wasn't even 9 am yet. (12 step program, anyone?)
In a moment of inspiration I decided to change my fate. As soon as my four year old was out the door on her way to preschool, I loaded up the toddler and drove out to Yellow Fork Canyon. It began to rain and I began to doubt (again) if I was up to this day. Honestly, I repeatedly considered bagging the inspiration, veering off my course, and heading straight for Mrs. See's. (It's 4 o'clock somewhere.)
At the last turn before the canyon it truly came down to turn left <-----Mrs. See's or turn right ----->hiking.
I chose the right. In more ways than one.
Hiking was exactly what I needed today. The trail was deserted. The only company I had was the 30 pounds of cuteness and pack I carried on my back. Without my children along I was able to set my own pace and work my way up the mountain at a decent and steady pace. Cee chatted away on my back in her sweet, sing-songy gibberish. I passed her Craisins, songs, and rounds of counting. And she was content.
Our only companions were the falling leaves and dozens of flighty or curious deer. It rained lightly, reviving the bright colors of the leaves, wood, and grass. Even the dirt seemed more vibrant and rich than the last time I had been on this trail a week ago.
As I meandered up the trail, through the tunnel of wild branches, my imagination worked to revive itself from years of neglect. At first I ignored it, reminding myself that I'm a grown adult and reasonable adults don't play pretend. But before long I found that I was frustrated with my decayed sense of fantasy and wondered when I had become so old and boring.
By the time I began the descent back to the bottom of the hill where my minivan full of responsibility, bills, and business waited to carry me off into the stiff sunset of reality and rules, I had cleared enough creative cobwebs to imagine that I was a Nelwyn, traveling alongside Willow, and returning Elora Danan back to the Daikini...
...Or the tenth member of the Fellowship, packing a happy, little, hungry hobbit on my back...
...Or an Indian maiden who had happened upon a lost pioneer baby and was returning her new treasure to her tribe.
(Looks like I still got it. Fist bump to my fellow nerds.)
As we neared the end of the trail, the rain began to thicken and chill. The affability of the mountain was waning. My little hobbit was the first to complain. (Time for second breakfast, eh?) My charming retreat was quickly unraveling, but it had been enough to fill my cup and return me to the world with a renewed sense of purpose and conviction. I wouldn't go so far as to say it satisfied my need for chocolate. Let's not say things we might regret, shall we?
But...there is magic to be found in the mountains.