The Adventure That Is Life

July 2020

I love adventures. I love being able to just choose a direction to start heading in and just going. I love the excitement of not knowing what will be found along the way or at the end. I love letting go of any control and just following my gut… and I find it incredibly amusing that whilst I love going on an adventure in the physical sense, the journey of life with its twists and turns, gets me frustrated and feeling like I need to control the direction I’m headed in. In the journey of life, I can’t seem to let go sometimes and I also find myself lacking patience. I think I need to take a leaf out of my own book and maybe reflect on what happened yesterday.

Yesterday, we went on one of my adventures after having a bit of a lazy start to the morning. We all got dressed and layered up for walking, and then hopped in the car for a drive south. Why south? No idea. Maybe because we’ve headed north on previous trips and we hadn’t gone south in a while. The reason doesn’t matter though – it was just a direction that I chose to head in.

On the way, the kids told me some of the things that they were hoping to see or do, knowing that we’d probably not get to see and do everything. We were also all open to just being surprised, and surprised we were.

After heading down a few roads that led to practically nowhere, or at least no place we could get out for a walk (because the trails were too muddy or private), we finally came across somewhere that we could stretch our legs and be amazed by nature. We found a walking trail that took us through lots of trees, bushes and wildflowers. A walking trail that stopped and started around waterfalls, cliff faces, and natural stone stairs. A trail that led us to a gorgeous ocean view where we were lucky enough to spot a group of whales breaking through the surface, splashing around and spurting out water. And on the way back, we were blessed with an expansive view of the hills and valleys around us, and a gorgeous winter sunset. The trek was around an 8km round trip, so it wasn’t very far, but it felt very special. All of us found something to be in awe of. We were surrounded by blessings everywhere we looked.

But the biggest gift of all of it was the ability to just let go and see where you could end up and what you could find along the way.

And that’s something that I need to do more in my life. I’ve taught the kids how to do this with life, but I haven’t done it enough myself. I’ve taught them to have a direction but not be too fussed with what they find along the way. I’ve taught them not to get stressed with any obstacles or be sad about any dead ends or closed doors, and to be okay with just turning around or choosing another way forward. I’ve taught them to look for and be grateful for all the little blessings along the way.

It’s often been said and it really is true: Life is a journey, not a destination. You never stop learning and growing. And you can’t necessarily choose the outcome, but you can maintain a positive outlook and just keep forging ahead.

I think it’s something that the world needs to learn right now. Yes, this virus has put a real kink in all our plans, but that doesn’t mean that we need to lose hope, or look at things with a narrow mindset. We need to think differently. We need to do things differently. The old way of doing things doesn’t work and a change was and is needed – both big and small. If you haven’t already, take a moment to think about what you could be doing differently, however small. You just might be surprised at what you’ll find along your path when a small change is made.

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Enjoy lifeChange your perspectiveSlow downEverything will fall into placeBe gratefulYou can always change direction