Entering the trail was like embarking upon any other promising to meander through a grove of giants. Over time, the mind quiets. The breath settles, and the conversation ends. The feet keep moving, exploring the ground. The eyes watch the trail and take in the grandeur of the forest before us. The trail winds around hills and before we know it, this grove of giants, lying in a national forest, was unlike any other from our experience. Grouping after grouping of towering giants, we walked with a lightness of step, upon a pine needle softness. Suddenly overcome by the beauty and sheer grace of majestic group after majestic group of trees whose trunks girths were unknown, we feel we have left Earth as we know it. The sights, the quietness, the smells, the dreaminess led to the knowledge that at that moment the size of life before us dwarfed our own understanding. This usually goes unnoticed, this grove showed us our smallness. Leaving that section of trail forever burned into our hearts, we stop, turn, and look back between two final monsters standing guard with the sudden realization that we had crossed the portal back into our “real” world. The gradual going in unnoticed, this sudden exit shocked us. Looking at my partner, we utter the words “Whaaaa” with the thoughts “What just happened? Where did we go? When can I go back?” Speechless. We pause. Awe and wonder. Hearts filled.
I wrote this while reflecting on a trail my husband I took out west, in the Sequoia National Forest. I fill with joy knowing I had this experience. I now consider the smallness we felt on that hike. I am humbled by the thought that my actions may not matter much on the grand scale. Except, I know better than that because I also acknowledge the ease with which forests can be gone with the strike of a match. So, I may be small in comparison to the whole, and my individual action may not mean much. Yet, I can be that spark that sets the whole forest ablaze if I choose. The trail told me I have to go inside to another time and another place to do that. In that place, all is healed. Our journey to wholeness is essential. Our journey to healing is imperative for it is in healing ourselves that others and the Earth are treated and that the whole is healed. In truth, it is then we discover that it was never in need of healing. The forest told me that too. Enjoy your journey.