I had the opportunity of hiking up to the top of Goat Mountain a mere 12 days ago, on the last sunny Saturday in October. It was an unexpected and total bonus day, as I had planned to be working that Saturday, but a couple of cancellations and a glorious day led me, my partner Oliver and his puppy Tillie up the steep trail and into absolutely magnificent mountain views that unfolded for us as we journeyed to the top. I had to pinch myself often, ask myself repeatedly, how had I ended up there, what circumstances had transpired to allow me to be on top of a mountain in late fall enjoying life to it’s fullest capacity?
The first thing that came to mind is that I have come to a place where I really enjoy what I am doing, in my career as a Massage Therapist and in Life. I am clear about who I am, what I love, and I pursue things that feel right. Doing massage feels completely right. Being in business for myself feels right. Enjoying the great outdoors with loved ones feels ever so right. I have come to the place in my life where I am able to successfully match up my passions with what I am do in work and life, and that feels really good!
The second thing I got out of the day is the ability to seize the moments when they arise! How often does one wake up to an unexpectedly free day and say hey, this is what I most want to do and the company I most want to keep doing it, and have those things actually happen for us? Often in my past experience of life, I have tended to analyze and scrutinize the potential costs and benefits of an action, or make myself so busy that such opportunities rarely presented themselves, or if they did, my tendency had been to think I should be practical and productive instead of adventurous and spontaneous. This time, I grasped ahold of the idea and went with it, to unexpectedly fantastic results.
The third clear realization from that day and time on the mountain is an appreciation of who I am, what I am about, and what things bring me the greatest joy and happiness in my life. I asked myself, when and where am I the most at home, the most identified with myself and my passions, and what makes me feel the most alive? Some of the resounding themes are: being in nature, having and cultivating meaningful relationships with loved-ones, friends, family and clients, having the connection that occurs with my clients on the massage table, trusting and following my intuitions (both as a massage therapist and in life), and being conscious and aware of what constitutes responsible self-care and caring for others.
And finally, the fourth reason I sat atop Goat Mt. was that I was willing to proceed into a place of familiarity under circumstances that were slightly outside of my comfort zone and find deep and lasting satisfaction there. Previously, I had only done this hike in the summertime, when one thinks of doing hikes of 4200 feet elevation gain in a mountainous environment. To do it late October, after some snow had fallen and the fear of cold or other uncertainties presented themselves, felt just a bit exciting and daring. I have found in my life that I CAN do so many things I wouldn’t have considered doing before, just by moving out of that realm of comfort and trying new things. That is why I became a Massage Therapist later in life, by taking the risk to delve into something new and different and to find such meaning in it. I truly believe it is never too late to learn, to grow, to gain confidence in new things, and to expand who we are as individuals.