Thursday, July 01, 2010

An Uphill Climb

A long while ago, I had a dream about climbing a Mountain. I could almost see the summit but it was mostly obscured by Brush and Trees. I was situated in a Meadow and there were Trees around the perimeter. From the Meadow there were paths that led deeper into the Forest and I suppose, farther up the Mountain.

There were people in the Meadow and some were taking different paths further into the Trees. Some were resting, their heads placed upon old, mossy Logs...Trees which had fallen to their final resting place. And some were returning down the Mountain. 

I was a watcher in my dream. It felt as if I were floating, unseen, amongst the other hikers in my dream. I noticed some had backpacks and other equipment, some carried blankets and pillows, some had walking sticks...and some had nothing at all.

I watched hikers coming into the Meadow, each one exuberant and full of life...happy to be there. I watched people taking paths further up the Mountain...their demeanour focused  and serious. I watched those who were well prepared leave as if for a great adventure. And those people who had nothing with them...well, some were happy-go-lucky, seemingly choosing a path at random and simply beginning to climb. But some of the unprepared people seemed discouraged to me, as if it was all just too much of an effort.

I noticed these people eventually went back the way they came.

This was one of those dreams which stayed with me. The Meadow felt welcoming; I did not want to leave it. There were friends and family who moved on, yet for was a safe and comforting place.

I've thought about it often. And I've wondered when the time will come for me to move on, farther up that Mountain. I've wondered if it is time to take on another challenge, another climb requiring more courage, commitment and directed effort.

The thought of another challenge makes me tired; hence, my long sojourn in the Meadow. But eventually, an opportunity will arise and I will long to climb those Mountain paths, once again. The difficulty of each path may be less if I am prepared for it, this time.

I consider my life and the paths I have taken throughout. I don't believe I was ever prepared for any of them, choosing instead to wander along, taking each challenge as it came, with faith that I would make it through. And because I was ill-prepared for most of them, failure was not unusual. But with each challenge, each Cliff, or Rock wall, or Lake that stood in my path...I learned.

And so, I feel a bit surer that I am coming closer to taking the path which will lead to the summit of the Mountain. But the Meadow is seductive. It induces a feeling of comfort and security...a feeling of wanting to stay where there are no challenges to confront.

There will be no inner growth, if I choose to stay in the sunny, warm, Flower-filled Meadow.

It is my choice, of course, whether or not I want to evolve further, if I want to climb higher up that Mountain. Do I want to make more choices that influence the rest of my life? Each challenge contains a lesson; each lesson leads me further towards the summit of the Mountain.

I have a feeling that whichever path I choose will be difficult in spots, will seem clear and direct at times, and it may turn suddenly in a direction that surprises me. And what happens when the path forks, as paths will?

I understand, as well, that no path is more difficult or easier than any other. I think the degree to which it is is up to me.It is what I make it.

And if I ever reach the summit of the Mountain, I know it is not the end of the journey. I will continue to rise, transcending my life's purpose.

But still...In my dream, I stayed in the Meadow, flitting here and there, checking the people who slept, watching the high spirits of the people who had decided to continue on ever higher, and realizing that the ones who decided to come down will eventually climb again.

I believe I am trying to forget, there in the sprightly Meadow, that life is supposed to be a challenge.  It is the effort of climbing ever upward that creates the fire within me to carry on and strengthen my Spirit.

Right now, I am happy in the Meadow. In future days or months or years, I will be ready to further my personal evolution. It is up to me as to when.

But I must tell you, I am beginning to feel a little behind. I am beginning to want to climb...I just need a tiny bit of further rest.

Climbing ever upward on that life's path to the summit of the Mountain does take it out of me.I have taken a few forays on some of the paths, but none so far have resonated deep within me.

But...just over there, around the bend, is a pathway I have not tried. It is calling, and I am ignoring the call, as yet. It is one that may be lonely and difficult...I don't see too many people taking it.

I will take my time preparing for it. Preparing...a word I don't know much about. And I know even if I am ready in all ways, there will be times I will wish I had never begun.

But that's what life is all about.

Isn't it?


  1. This is both an amazing dream and an amazing interpretation of the dream. Once I went by the Girl Scout Motto, be prepared. For me, this involved being way tooo cautious in some areas of my life. As if one couldnt sally forth unprepared as bad things might happen.

    Now, I try not to be so prepared (the opposite of yourself I guess). (of course, in the area of choosing men I have always been uncautious and have always "failed."). I am trying now to do something and then see what happens. To always be surprised.

    That said, I think i have been in this field of yours for three years or so. Yes, it is comfy, and I am lazy and part of me wants to stay. Plus, you are there, over by the stream! Hiya.

    Lots to think about here. Thanks for sharing. As they say, wherever you go, there you are.

  2. Your thoughts on the journey are deep and interesting, Marion. The Meadow, the Mountain, the various Paths, are good metaphors for the human experience. Whatever path you choose for yourself, you'll walk it with the grace and dignity you have already acquired on your journey thusfar. And of course, we can depend on learning something new with each new adventure. I think that's the nature of adventuring forth.

  3. Thanks for signing up, it is important to get new readers, especially when you write such interesting posts as you do :)

    Great post and wonderful photos. I would love to find the right path myself but sadly at the moment I am stuck in having to choose one of two, neither being satisfactory. Sadly for me it is not to evolve further but more a necessary financial decision to make.

    But as always I know I'll sort it out and later wonder why I was so unsure LOL.

  4. I got a mental picture of the meadow in "The Wizard of Oz" as I read your words. I totally get what you mean. But there's a time for everything, even a time to rest and recharge your batteries. I've always been a homebody, but I dream of one day being able to travel to Italy or Istanbul. I may do it only in books, but that's okay, too. :-) Blessings!

    "To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else." ~Emily Dickinson

  5. I guess I see my life now as being on a plateau a little above the meadow. I'm not sure I want to take on any new challenges that would require much preparation. I've earned a rest.

  6. I know that meadow, too! I've gone into and out of it all my life. Rest while you can. When the need to move won't let you rest anymore, you'll know it's time to move on and you won't mind doing it.

  7. damn it, i just love you marion. you understand, and what a relief to read your words and understand exactly.

    i don't think i'm in the meadow right now, but i do think i am where you are. that sounds interesting...

    wonderful, precise, angelic piece of writing.

    let's try to talk before your family comes...


  8. I love it when your posts are so personal to me. You resonate with all of us in the way you interpret your dreams. You really could be speaking for me!

    I've been in the meadow far too long. I feel stirrings that are finally moving me forward by baby steps. Incrementally, I know I'll eventually get where I need to be until it's time to move on once again.
    What I need to remember is I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be ;)

    ~love and blessings~

  9. Sukipoet,

    Hiya, yourself, Suki! I wonder how one prepares oneself for further movement in one's life? I've been under the impression the opportunity presents itself first. Or do we go and MAKE the opportunity happen? I guess it depends upon the opportunity.

    That meadow is wonderful, though. It seems like a little slice of Heaven, a resting zone, even if I know I will move on. Sooner or later, heh!!

    Enchanted Oak,

    Chris, there are days where I cannot wait to venture further on...and then there are those days where even the thought of it is all too much. I'm of the opinion that it is largely out of my hands. If I am propelled forward, I hope I will embrace it fully and...thankfully, as well. After all, I am of the opinion I chose this life and its teachings, before I was born. Sometimes, I don't believe I knew what I was doing, when it came time to plan this life, heh, heh!!

  10. Jackie,

    The new site seems interesting...I haven't had time to navigate it well, as yet. I'm hoping to spend time on it today.

    The photos are of Graham when he was young and did much mountaineering and climbing. He has some awesome of these days, I'll try and do a post involving some of his more hair-raising adventures!


    Thanks for the quote...and how true it is!

    I love being fact, I have to challenge myself each time I have to go to town, as I have so much to do AT home. But, for gosh sakes, groceries have to be bought, appointments have to be met, volunteer work with hospice is necessary, and just seeing other people is important. I am happy to be involved with life; yet if it was left up to me, I would find a lot of books and den up somewhere reading about other people's worlds! Without distractions.

  11. Jan,

    Perhaps it is my age...I will be sixty in a few months. And I keep asking myself how I got there...I feel inside as if I'm 18 and just beginning the journey. I have not assimilated the fact that part of the journey has already been done!!

    I can see the plateau and it looks inviting as well, with a few very stunning scenic views...Enjoy your rest, Jan, you're is well deserved!


    That's IT! You're an amazing teacher, and not just for the youngsters among us. It IS a relief to hear that truth...when the need to move becomes greater than the need to rest...I won't mind preparing at all. Always thus.

    Thank you for reminding makes me rest easier!!!


    Heh! So you believe you and I are not IN the meadow? Just searching it out? Flying in and there? On our way...? Or just arriving...?

    Huh. I gotta think on that one some. And you're right...we have to talk! xoxo

    Studio lolo,

    Yes, you're right...we're exactly, each of us, right where we're supposed to be right now. I love it when I get reminded! And I guess I know, too, what those stirrings you mentioned feel like. I wonder if I'm a little apprehensive as to what, where, why I've decided, in my life's plan, to go from here.

    I've been the recipient of some pretty vicious surprises, which haven't really been balanced out by the joyful ones. So perhaps the new path I will be following will lead to wonderful joy.

    I have to remember, from the meadow, I can see the summit...

  12. So beautiful is your resting place, Marion. Enjoy. Simply enjoy. Challenges will come soon enough. Life is like that.

  13. Marion, this is so beautiful and just what I needed. I too am resting in the meadow, but I feel myself starting to pack and getting ready to climb. I think it is going to start off as a very hard journey, but in the end it will be well worth it.

  14. Marion, you always amaze me. I remember lots of my dreams, but they are always snippets. I always wondered if I was living up to my potential when I was working. It took retirement for me to understand that I was working up to someone else's idea of what my potential should be. It's a nice place to be now that I can decide. - Margy

  15. Hi. One of my favourite past-times is clicking on the "Next Blog" button on top of my blog. It throws up a random blog from anywhere in the world, and the prospect of viewing anyone from the other end of the globe is fascinating.

    I arrived at your blog in this way, and hence I thought of leaving a comment.

    Thank you.

  16. Annie,

    Nobody ever said I had to seek out those challenges, Annie, so I think I will do just as you say...I will enjoy the rest. For now.

    Annie Coe,

    Sometimes, those very difficult beginnings can almost make me turn back. Yet I know if I stick with that rocky, scary path, in the end it will be worth it...many times over. There is such a sense of relief and pride at the end of it.


    "It took retirement for me to understand that I was working up to someone else's idea of what my potential should be." It feels so great when I can decide what I want to take on or do, rather than following someone else's agenda.You and Wayne have taken on a rather large challenge in your retirement, however, and it must feel really good to do it on your own time.

  17. Abhid-d,

    I find some of the best blogs just letting Google decide who will come up next. Thank you for visiting, and for leaving a comment, Abhid-d!!

  18. Love the analogies, such a beautiful and insightful dream... i am in the meadow with you looking up too <3

  19. I like your interpretation of this dream, Marion. If I may borrow from it, then I am in a meadow and studying the flowers, the grasses, and the trees there, purposefully avoiding even a glance at the mountains. Right now I don't want to climb even a small hill. One day I'll be ready, but not now.

  20. Nollyposh,

    We'll travel those mountainous paths together, Nolly...sometime in the future!


    Lovely! It's a great way to spend time in that meadow...lots to learn whilst studying the vegetation.

    It seems so many of us just want to stay in the meadow. I feel it must be the time of life I'm in...if I was twenty, I know I'd be itching to climb a really rough path. I once liked challenges a great deal, and I've not changed. Just...not right now.

  21. Marion,
    Thanks for the kind words; friends always come through.
    The reference to a "tall boy" is a southern US term for a 16 ounce bottle of ice-cold beer. As opposed to the squat bottle or metal can type of imbibing. I figure one won't hurt me as a rare pleasure.

    I debated whether to do a post on my problems but figure if you cannot keep it honest, what is the point of a blog? As you know.

  22. Goatman,

    I really wanted to kick something when I read your news. And I'm so glad you posted about it...there's a great deal of support out in blog land. If it were me, that support would help to sustain me.

    I'm glad you cleared up what a tall boy is...I kinda thought that's what it might be, heh heh!

    So what can I even begin to say? I'm so glad you sound so positive. I love your saying...Live it or live with it...excellent!! And your bed and room look comfortable and very cozy, plus the deck must be wonderful.

    I'll be thinking of you and I wish you all the very best blessings over the next while. Please keep posting updates, if you feel up to it, of course. And I'm glad you're keeping it honest, my dear friend.

  23. wow - how do you do this? I too am in the meadow and I love the image - and the imagery - of a comforting sunny, yet somewhat seductive meadow. Yes...I can completely relate. and I also see the mountaintop above the trees and clouds - and am maybe not ready to start that climb, or even look for the path that leads out of the meadow..but I know it's there and that's something isn't it?

    Amazing post dear - really.

  24. "But that's what life is all about....Isn't it?"

    I guess I just think that life is about what we want it to be about...

  25. You're welcome Marion. Thanks.

  26. Your time in the meadow has and is serving your purpose right now. You know you have to go on to another place and you have to want to go to that place. For the present you are learning from and teaching all of us who are on our own journey. Some of us are not in the meadow yet, most of us are in the meadow and others are asending to another destination in the journey. The sights are always magnificent and full of awe. As we learn and teach our level of enlightenment tends to go to a different plane or up the mountain. Just think how awesome the meadow will look from atop the crest of that mountain. We will bring the sights the smells the sounds and the feelings of the meadow to the next level of our journey and when they mix with the new sights, sounds and essences of the next level we will be closer to bliss.

  27. Mim,

    Thank you for your comment, Mim, it feels so very positive! I know exactly how you feel...the knowledge that the path is always there if you want to take it is very comforting. There's always tomorrow...or next year!


    Indeed it is. Sometimes, though, we get slammed by something straight out of the blue...


    thank YOU for returning!!


    "Just think how awesome the meadow will look from atop the crest of that mountain"

    I hadn't thought of that. Thank you so much, my dear friend, for pointing that out. It makes the itch to leave the meadow... a little deeper. I'm not sure I will be able to reach the top for awhile, but I believe there are really amazing sights, sounds, feelings just a little further on that I haven't experienced as yet and I am beginning to want to.

    Imagine...just imagine how really awesome the next journey might be!

    Thank you, Dave, for a really super comment!!!