Gratitude Celebration 58: Companion

John Lemberg is my hiking companion and someone who knows from experience what it’s like to be a middle child in a large family. He’s been the voice of hope and resilience when I needed it most. He’s been a navigator when I’m disoriented. He’s a warm body on winter backpacking trips. He’s a ridgerunning colleague and fellow long distance hiker with no plans on stopping at a mere 10,000 miles.

Perhaps what I’m most grateful for about John, now that I’ve known him for a little over seven years, is that he is someone who wants to consciously relate with me in a way that honors us both as precious and unique individuals.  That’s no small feat with someone like me who loves to go deep into feelings and meanings and self-discovery.  He’s willing to engage in those kinds of discussions. He is getting really good at living our lives together as if we’re in a Satori Board Game.

What’s that like? Here’s a snapshot. We frequently say to each other, when one of us starts pouring out a story about an upsetting situation or problem, “I’m sorry that’s happening to you. Tell me more.” We used to try to fix the situation or deny its validity as a problem. Now, we see every challenging situation as a journey from Victimland to Satori, which means “awakening to a spiritual perspective.”  It really helps get the journey underway to acknowledge that we’re at Square One in that game.

Along our way, just as in the game, we have learned to use phrases like, “I love you just the way you are.” Or “I honor your willingness to be open to a new perspective.” Or “I can see we are healing angels with and for each other.”  These are all words used in various squares of the Satori Game. We’re finding them helpful in our daily relationship too.

It’s funny that I’m writing about being grateful that my significant other plays games with me! When it’s Satori, though, that’s a game that brings us closer together and feeling more fulfilled. That’s a game worth playing, I think!

Thanks, John, for being my partner in Satori and in Life!




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