I’ve been resisting canceling my reservation, although I know I need to. It was to be my “Coming back to Self,” Soulful journey through the Alps. Specifically, the Haute Route, a backcountry 110-mile trek through Switzerland and France via the Matterhorn and Mont Blanc. An experience designed to help me traverse through a healthy process of reflection and re-birth associated with my divorce.
This “once in a Lifetime” journey was to be a Gift to my Self, as I launch into my next chapter of Life. Much as I did 30 years ago during an ironic dream-fulfilling, parallel jaunt through Europe upon graduation from my doctoral program. Another personal defining period of time of Life during which I called upon renewing Life experiences to memorialize and then deliver me into the next phase of Life.
COVID however, has changed all that. Not just for me. But, for everyone.
In-between consistently taking in gratitude for ALL that I have—my family’s health, my health, health insurance and a supportive and loving community of friends around me—I’ve found my Self pondering other, higher order musings.
Specifically, I’ve found my Self reflecting on the many Life adventures I’ve previously been able to experience, recalling them all with an indescribable amount of appreciation for having stopped and taken those precious moments to LIVE. Adventure. Explore. To indulge my Soul’s enjoyment of jumping into Life FULLY. Even when it wasn’t convenient. Or typical. Or when there were endless possible reasons for why it made absolutely no sense to stop and play.
And I did it anyway.
Carpe Diem. Deciding to “seize the moment,” when the moments were available.
A few such moments that jump to mind were my insistence to finally fulfill my dream to go Down Under, and a subsequent family trip for my milestone birthday, where I climbed the Sydney Harbor Bridge alongside my daughter to challenge our mutual fear of heights, snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef and falling in love with the people and culture of Australia.
Followed by falling in love with the people and culture of New Zealand, including a midnight trek through the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, kayaking alongside sea lions and happening upon pod after pod of heartwarming dolphin.
Concerts in faraway cities to see long ago legends, whose music I wanted to “introduce” my daughters to. Broadway plays and touring musicals that were dear to my kids’ hearts and could have been easily passed by… too much money, too much stress, not enough time to go… and then we went:) And Lived! And Laughed. Together.
Family and personal moments that can never be replaced. Moments of Life lived. That are now part of my history, my Psyche’s Life story. Moments that have fed my Soul, past and present. Moments that I am even more grateful for having lived, given COVID.
Throughout the pandemic I’ve found my Self reflecting, looking in the rearview mirror on ALL the incredible times that we were able to have, and I’ve found my Self saying over and over again, I am SO grateful that I stopped and insisted upon embracing those times. That I didn’t wait. That I jumped into Life with insistence ~ and urgency ~ as if the opportunity might not be there tomorrow.
It is in my nature to look in the eye of potential or actual tragedy, and garner lessons from whatever Life is offering. During this time of COVID, the Life lesson that I am reinforcing within my Spirit, is to never wait to fulfill an experience or to Live in the manner that your Soul is calling for.
To always Carpe Diem, with an urgency that insists that Life will not pass you by.
I look forward to savoring my Haute Route experience, whether it happens this year or next. I will make it happen. And in the meantime, my plan is to seize the day within this day’s COVID version; making everyday matter, enjoyable, meaningful.
With a sense of urgency so Life won’t pass me by.