Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Grace, Gratefulness, and Connectedness
We were on the way to Mirror Lake, and, being the introvert that I am, I had put in my earbuds and was listening to my Ipod, tuning out my friends for a while, just looking at the scenery and musing about things. I don't know how to explain the feeling that overwhelmed me as I walked, seeing the sun starting to peek out from behind the sheer cliff faces. I could smell the earth and pine trees. I got that feeling--you know that feeling--where you feel connected to everything and it feels like your own heart is beating along with the pulses of the earth and if you wept, the rivers and rocks and trees would weep with you.
And then I had to marvel that I was able to feel this feeling at all.
There was a time going to Yosemite was more like this: "Wow, cool, great hike! It's beautiful here! Now let's go get a beer." And it would be two beers at Curry Village on the patio, then a hop over to the Ahwahnee bar for another cocktail or two, then a walk to Yosemite Village at Degnan's to pick up a bottle of wine and pouring it into a Yosemite closed container and walking around more while drinking that. Then back to Curry Village or a campsite or out of the park to Groveland to spend the night and drink some more. Sleep was more like passing out than it was lying in bed, listening to the night noises and critters running around (well, and the screaming toddler in the next tent cabin).
This September, I'll have been sober for four years. And I still think it's a miracle, that God or Cosmic Consciousness or whatever you wish to call it, intervened in my small world and reminded me that life is about so much more than staring anxiously into the bottom of an empty shot glass. Every morning I face east and am grateful for a new day. My senses are no longer so dulled that I'm incapable of epiphanies.