Alone on a mountain top beside sweet smelling sugar pine, feet planted on slanting and frigid granite. Moonrise over meadows of knee-high auburn grasses, a cathedral of sequoias and aspen and fir on the periphery, dark with ageless secrets. Nose and fingertips growing numb, my breath clouding and dissolving in the icy air. Silence and dusk carve out room in my troubled mind and gift me a little peace.
Troubled mind, troubled mind. Skinny body, quarrelsome guts. Fitful sleep, fitful sleep. I’m a sleepy cowpoke atop an ornery old swayback, trying to keep the horizon level so I don’t get sick.
A child in me wakes up in this place, wanting to hold tightly to something so ephemeral. Strangers in my old bedroom, campgrounds carved out of my backyard forest and memories coming fast that are difficult to place. I fantasize about never leaving.
I found a minute where my old body (the one that used to work really, really well) scratched to the surface and gave me a blissful 36 hours of deep breathing and covering ground and gaining altitude and believing things could all be OK someday.
Now, alone in the van in someone’s driveway, a million miles from where I want to be.
What happens when you don’t believe in yourself?