April 9, 2012

The Mountain

Our family spent last week in the mountains of Highlands, NC. One of our favorite things to do is "climb" mountains -- we walk up paths that have been traveled by many before us. 

As I was walking up, sometimes carrying Tallulah, I thought about the many feet that had traveled over the same ground. I wondered what they were thinking when they climbed the same mountain the day before, a year before, 10 years before and even 100 years prior. What worries filled their hearts and minds? What joys? Who did they invite to climb the mountain with them? Maybe they didn't think at all during their climb; maybe they left all of that at the base of the mountain and just climbed -- enjoying the clean air, the colorful leaves, the sound of the creek, and the smell of a fresh new day.

A mountain is a great place to take whatever you have been carrying. Take it to the top of the mountain and set it down as you watch the sun rise over the mountain range. And leave it there. 

It's also a great place to go with those you love most. Not a word needs to be spoken in order to experience something magical. Walking with Annabelle -- my oldest daughter -- we had a number of instances in which we were just holding hands while walking along. 

And it's a great place to be alone. As I was carrying Tallulah going up one of the higher mountains in the region, she was asleep on my shoulder and Yen Ling/other girls were way behind us. I just took a step at a time. I literally watched my foot be placed on each newly covered piece of mountain -- making sure my step was sure since I was carrying my baby girl. I thought: "This is life right here. One step at a time. No second thoughts about what is behind. No concern for what is far ahead. One of my loves in my arms, taking one step at a time." 

And that's what I think life should be about -- that's what my focus should be. One step at a time with what matters most closest to me.

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