February 20, 2018
This was one of the hardest choices I’ve made in a while! I have loved my ridgerunning job, fulfilling 7 seasons in two different sections of Virginia. I remember one day on the job halting suddenly in a grove of red spruce on the slope of Bluff Mountain saying, “I’ve done it! I’m earning my living hiking!” At the end of that season, I climbed up to a favorite outcrop on Spy Rock, set up my camera with a ten-second timer and raised my arms in celebration of my season. A few weeks ago, a friend wrote asking if she could use that photo as a model for her vision of freely walking in mountains following her knee surgery. What a perfect testimony to the power of that moment for me having walked into my vision! Yes! Ridgerunning has been a fulfilling summer job!
And now, I’ll go back for another season, right? That would make sense, wouldn’t it?
Well, I actually chose differently! This year, some other opportunities are bubbling to the top – taking care of my grandson for two weeks, spending time with grandson number two, visiting my mom in Ohio, offering ForgivenessWalks programs and coaching, and……….walking a chunk of the Pacific Crest Trail! After all, one of the big reasons for choosing the winter seasonal job I have at Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is that I would have my summers free for hiking!
So, John and I are juggling all of these things to come up with a summer itinerary that balances trips across the US in a reasonable flow.
It was sad to say no to Ridgerunning for this year! Wish me well in my other choices!
February 7, 2018
Walking 32 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail sure is a good way to test the idea of walking for half the summer! A twenty-mile day yesterday, followed by 12 miles today reminded me that walking in Nature is my favorite way to live.
Today’s walk even included getting on a scheduled coaching call, with John contentedly waiting, and bantering about ideas afterward. “I can work on my business from the trail!” I thought.
Not only that, two women from my Facebook community wrote directly to me with their questions about the trail. “Women are seeking me out for suggestions and coaching while I’m out walking! I’m walking in service!”
I get really excited about helping women, and men too, visualize and claim their trail dreams, find ease and joy walking their trail, and ease their burdens from past suffering wherever their journey unfolds.
I’m getting keen on the idea of using this summer to expand Forgivenesswalks and walk as well!
I could offer:
- Custom personal coaching in Atlanta, North Georgia, and southern Ohio
- Virtual coaching by phone and internet
- Audio versions of Walk for a Singing Heart
- In-person Walks for a Singing Heart
- Satori games in person and virtual
Which of these services can you
- Help me with?
- Refer to someone?
I’d love to do that!
February 6, 2018
With 10,000 miles of hiking under my feet, I am surprised when I forget something! But yesterday I did. My sunhat. What did I do?
Check out the hat I fashioned from my neck scarf and a three-pronged stick! Well, it loomed goofy, especially with the projectile poking out from my head. But, it worked! Don’t quit!
Improvise! What’s a story you have of improvising to save the day?
February 5, 2018
“Today is the day we could celebrate making a glorious choice and having a blessingway for our summer adventure,” I said when the waking music played this morning. It is the day John heard that our Ridgerunning boss wants to know if I want the 19-week job (with John subbing for me for three weeks while I babysit my grandson.)
“But, we haven’t done that, have we?” He replied.
A full conversation ensued, which thrilled me as a sign of progress in our communication! We even talked about money, and he stayed in the conversation, and we even concluded with words instead of stormy silence. Yay!
The beliefs I notice I have about this situation are:
- If I give up Ridgerunning I can’t go back to it.
- I have to be earning money this summer to support myself and to feel honorable.
- I am doubtful that I can run Forgivenesswalks profitably.
- I doubt that John really wants to work in Forgivenesswalks.
- Ridgerunning is a sure thing, taking the least effort to learn new things, and it’s the best financial choice.
Stepping back, I can acknowledge that none of those are facts. I can see a use for Byron Katie’s four questions about the statements being true and what turnaround could make them even more ripe with possibility or for a good session of “What if?”
I’ll report back!
January 31, 2018
My Super Blue Blood Moon experience today filled my senses with awe and my soul with awakening! A few days ago I realized that the view I would get from my employee housing here at Anza-Borrego Desert State Park would limit my experience to just the beginning of the totality phase of the eclipse. “That’s not good enough!” I declared. As a creator of fulfillment (in difference to a settler for whatever comes), I asked, “Where can I go to get the fullest eclipse experience? I need to be able to see the horizon!” Where better to see the western horizon than the west coast!
I proposed to my partner, John, “How about if we camp on Tuesday night at one of our State Beaches? That way, we could get to see the most of the eclipse!” To my surprise, at least to the surprise of my Old Story that “John never wants to do my ideas” he said “Sure. That sounds good!”
The timing was perfect because Tuesday and Wednesday are our days off. I complicated things, however, by agreeing to do programs at the Visitor Center on both Tuesday morning and Wednesday evening. (Would someone please remind me next time I schedule my month that even though I love doing programs, skipping days off is a great way to burn out!) Anyway, we arrived at our campsite at San Elijo State Beach, about two hours from home, just after dark, with the almost full moon beaming down on us. We took a walk on the beach in the bright moonlight and set the alarm for 3:30 a.m.
To my delight, I could see the beginning of the partial eclipse through the van window! I could take my time getting up out of the warm covers and heading back out to the beach. At 4:00 a.m. we grabbed our lawn chairs and returned to the beach. That’s when the feeling that this, indeed, could be a moment of completion and new beginning, stirred for me. As we walked in the soft red dark of the total eclipse, I stretched into boldly communicating my sense that this moment could provide a “new light” on our relationship.
You might recall that last week I wrote of our 10th anniversary of completing the Appalachian Trail and how it was marked by John declaring that he thought breaking up was our best strategy for going forward. All week, in true Satori fashion, I noticed the beliefs that were coming up. I played a Satori Game that invited me to stop feeding my Old Story of fear of closeness, being invisible, and keeping my light to myself.
“John,” I said, as we picked our way across the smooth stones in the sand, “I want to start being more open with you about how I’m really feeling and what I’m thinking and doing. I want to let you in on what I’m doing in my business and to put energy into creating a summer occupation that really does fulfill both of us!” You see, earlier that morning we had a strained conversation about what John wants to do this summer. The result was a brand new Visioning Brainstorm Map of all the ideas that we had. He has some pretty exciting ideas! I realized that there really are several alternatives to my idea of returning to Virginia for another season of Ridgerunning, which John isn’t thrilled about.
As the moonlight returned, I had a palpable feeling that my new beginning could truly start now! My boldness, openness, and authentic sharing actually felt pretty good. The “cleansed and resurfaced” moon was a metaphor for my own overshadowing and refreshing of behaviors and beliefs.
I would like to report that everything has gone smoothly and we are both now talking freely, creatively, and joyfully about bold, fresh choices and that would be false. We did keep talking most of the day, with one bout of tenseness when he accused me of stifling his expression of feelings. I was able to sincerely listen, affirming my commitment to visioning a mutually fulfilling summer.
My celebration of this amazing moon event climaxed with a lighthearted program with 57 visitors for the purpose of watching the magnificent moon rise! The moon’s confident, fresh countenace illuminated my soul with my clear purpose of enticing others to come outside and feel their connection with Earth and Spirit. Many participants thanked me for a fun and informative event. “I loved listening to you!” one woman said.
I’m up late, still buzzing from the inner stirring from this dance with the Moon!
What I’m taking into my sleep – if I can get to sleep – is
“What if this boldness, clarity, and fresh illumination can light up a thrilling adventure? What if this summer can truly be the summer that I magnify the dream I conceived ten years ago when I finished not just the Appalachian Trail but the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) as well? What if my declaration to earn my living hiking that spurred me on at the northern terminus of the PCT is ready to take on a fresh glow this summer?”
One of John’s ideas is to return to the Pacific Crest Trail and walk the northern half. What if I co-created that with him? What if everything I’ve done in the past nine years to build Forgiveness Walks could be unleashed and offered to generate the funds and the community to support this walk? What if it’s time to fulfill a new version of “hiking for my living?” That thought thrills me, like the returning light of the Moon. What if I let this light shine?
January 25, 2018
Today is my tenth anniversary of completing my thruhike of the Appalachian Trail. Yesterday, I got an anniversary message from my hiking partner that I eant to share with you, dear reader!
I added it to my 2007 Appalachian Trail Journal:
January 24, 2018
I’ve been playing with possibilities for my summer occupation, with an end-of – January deadline for the secure, familiar job offer. I notice how synchronous messages are helping me, waking me up, calling, supporting my choice, teasing me to choose the new, unformed creation, the entrepreneurial one.
- My song muse wrote: “Let’s pick a date for our songfest. How about June 10th?”
- My Ridgerunner supervisor said, “We’d love to have you…and being gone for two weeks at the end of May would not be good.”
- I am committed to taking care of my grandson for two weeks at the end of May.
- My women’s hiking summit coordinator said, “Time to get your workshop description in for our summit in July.”
- My partner said, “I don’t think we’re good partners for each other” on the eve of our tenth anniversary of completing our Appalachian Trail thruhikes together and being together since.
- Ten women said “Yes! I want to learn your technique for climbing mountains easily.
- A hiker in the women’s group invited me to her AT thruhike group saying, “You always have good advice!”
- A women’s group friend posted as a comment on the thread of another hiker who is struggling with a detractor, “my friend, Regina, could suggest ideas about your Inner Journey.”
As wrenching as it is, being solo removes the puzzle of creating a mutually fulfilling situation for two. I can choose for myself. On the other hand it adds more personal responsibility for logistical details, transportation, safety, cameraderie. Most of all, it dissolves the luxurious thrill of intimate co-creation and reliable companionship.
My whole being is swirling in the soup of choice! It’s an emotional hurricane!
January 21, 2018
Summer is coming! Every year for the past seven years, the ATC offers me a ridgerunning job! I love that job! It’s work I enjoy doing and feel good at, and the venue is the absolute best for me. It’s in the dream job category of getting paid to do something I love doing. Here’s the catch, though. As the years go on, I want to add another description to the “what I love doing” category. I want to add, “supporting, inspiring, coaching others to create radiantly fulfilling walks” to my list of job duties.
Ridgerunning doesn’t include that as one of my duties, although many hikers have received emotional support and coaching for their journey by talking with the me as the ridgerunner. When I have those kinds of conversations with hikers, it would be sooo easy to go beyond the scope of my representation of the ATC and into my Forgiveness Walks role. I’m very careful about steering clear of that, and have kept the handful of summer coaching sessions and classes to my days off. No question about that.
Each year, I have more conversations that urge me to entice hikers to focus on their Inner Journey. I am convinced that Inner Journey work is needed in the hiking community. I walk up favorite mountains imagining retreats, meditations, 13-Steps processes with guidance for hikers in using tools for introspection, charging their energy, clearing out old emotional baggage, meeting each mountain with balanced energy and choice. I have a job mapped out in my head, with pages of notes describing my programs. I have been working with a business coach to learn systems and habits of successful entrepreneurs. In my mind, Forgiveness Walks could be my fulltime job. I even talked about doing that a couple of years ago when I took a summer off ridgerunning. I started out on my hiking summer with John promoting a group coaching program. I gave it up when we didn’t see eye to eye (or foot to foot, I suppose for hikers!) about how to adapt our pace to my “walk in service” vision.
But, the call to “walk in service” is still calling! With Facebook, especially in a women’s hiking group of over ten thousand members, the conversations continue, in greater numbers, and with more clarity about how transformative and strengthening women’s walks could be when they have tools for turning their troubles into blessings. I can help with that!
The question is, is that NOW? Is it time to open the doors to Forgiveness Walks NOW (as in summer 2018)? Instead of working another season at Ridgerunning? In addition to Ridgerunning? In another fashion altogether? (I’m always open to at least three choices!)
When January ends, I will have chosen. I know it. I have chosen clearly for the past seven years.
I am open to your suggestions and comments!
Hit reply and let ’em fly!
January 9, 2018
Can anyone tell me how to get self-discipline? I don’t have much or maybe any. I need some. A lot. I have some serious things I need to change. I have no self-discipline to change them. I am so frustrated with myself.
A friend posted this on Facebook. I have an idea about this! Play the game Satori! You’ve heard me talk about it and invite you to play, I’m sure.
I use it regularly for Old Stories in my own life. I play the game solo, with ithers, with my partner. What happens is that I discover language that describes my unconscious beliefs. I chuckle often during the game because it seems uncanny that the cards I pick randomly seem to fit my story. I realize that my stories, beliefs, energy blocks, and projections are familiar ones to the general human experience. “Ah, so I’m not alone, or unusual, or hopelessly different after all!”
Satori helps me see humor and lightness in my emotional stuckness. It gives me a form and some space to air my grievances. Ultimately, it moves me to accept myself just as I am and finally speak a new way to look at my situation.
And, the benefit of that? To free me from my past! Give me a new choice to choose if I want to!
My favorite square to land on is “Self Acceptance” that says, “Affirm:I love myself being in my feelings about this, and know that when I’m ready I can choose peace.”
I’ll be setting up Satori games played by phone during February. Hit reply and say “I want to play!” and you can help choose the dates!
P.S. Here’s info about the game if you are unfamiliar.