- On August 2, 2019
While on vacation in Maine last week, my husband and I took a hike on the coast trail in Acadia National Park from Otter Point to Sand Beach and back. The trail winds through the trees and over rocks, fairly easy but with its share of ups and downs, roots and rocks that beg for attention.
The 2+ mile trail belies the time it takes to get from one end to the other. The magnificent vistas of crashing waves against giant pink and gray rocks frequently stopped me in my tracks. The glint of sun turning the ocean into a span of tiny twinkling diamonds mesmerized. Stopping just to gulp in the heady scent of balsam fir and sea air.
Just ahead of us, a couple moved back onto the main trail from a rocky side path. They seemed to be in their mid-late 80’s–and he’s using a walker! The trail at this point is quite rocky and uneven and I stopped to ask how they were finding it.
They both had big beautiful smiles as they shared how the husband had been diagnosed a year ago with a degenerative bone condition. How disappointing it was to hear the doctor’s admonishment to him to ‘take it easy’ at home.
With an inner light, the woman said they just live for traveling and being in the outdoors. We had to find a way to keep doing what we loved for as long as we possibly can.
The man had done research and found this Trionic off-road ‘sports’ walker with fat tire wheels and flexible suspension, giving him almost as much freedom as he had before to wander paths and trails through the woods.
“Won’t be climbing any tough mountains anymore, but I can still go where most people my age and condition would never think of going. And that’s what makes us feel alive!” And off they went.
The radiant joy on their faces, creating a way to do what they love despite the seeming obstacle that could stop them. I want to embody that same resilience and perseverance to work with whatever gets in my way of feeling truly ALIVE.
Look for me–and my walker–on a rocky trail sometime (a long time, I hope) in the future!
What makes you feel truly ALIVE?
Is there something that gets in the way?
What can you do?
Photo: DHerr, Maine coast, Acadia National Park, July 2019