Recently a friend of mine told me that I have an interesting mind: one that can see anything physical and through metaphor, relate it to my life. Lately, just to see if she’s right, I’ve been paying attention to things around me, choosing an object and seeing how I can relate it to my life.
Yesterday as I flew from Philadelphia to Seattle, via Dallas, I decided to see if she was right. As we were nearing Dallas, a river intrigued me, bending and winding through a very dry area. From 30,000 feet it looked like a cinnamon pretzel, twisty, multi colored, multi-textured, with varied width and depth. It went on for miles and miles through deserted territory. Certain parts of the river were dry with only a tiny trickle of water squeezing through and then, just around the bend the water was gushing and full to the banks, only to recede again on the next turn of the pretzel. It was really interesting to view from above. Where did all that water come from? Where was it going? What made some parts so abundant and other parts so parched?
I imagined myself in a raft going down that river. At some points I would be riding high and hanging on for dear life, as we splashed through the high waters, and at other points where the river spread out into too many tributaries and the river was almost dry, I’d be carrying my raft over nearly dry ground. I imagined how silly it would be to try to paddle upstream.
Then, just like my friend said, I looked at my life in relation to the river. My life IS like that river! Sometimes it’s full and abundant, sometimes it’s dry and in lack. Sometime it’s deep and other times it’s spread out in so many directions that it loses focus and things dry up, forcing me to carry my raft. Sometimes I’m going with the flow and sometimes I’m paddling upstream.
Somehow when you can see the entire section of river it makes the twist and turns of life easier, because we can see what’s coming. It’s easy to get out and ford your raft in a dry area when you know that abundant, gushing waters are just around the bend. It’s more difficult to do so when you’re tired and you don’t know how long the low waters and lack are going to last.
I found it interesting that in the river and in my life, where the water was focused there was no problem. The waters were strong, deep and constant. The dry area came when the river tried to cover too much ground, lost focus and direction. Problems occurred when the force of energy was divided and weakened between the many tributaries and directions. Not that I ever get overextended in MY life! Ha! It was all beginning to make sense to me.
How many times in our lives are things going along just great- riding those gentle fun rapids of life, but we stop paying attention and we lose our focus? Some call it being negative. Some label it as fear. Others attribute it to lack of time, money or resources. No matter the reason, when focus is lost, the outcome is the same- dissipation and loss of momentum. Your raft will get stuck in the muck.
Too many times we’re paying attention to what shows up in our life and losing focus on what we WANT in life. The more we lose sight of the goal, the more improbable it becomes. Fear and doubt build on top of confusion and frustration, and the goal moves even farther away.
Look to Nature for the answers. How does Nature fix things when stuck in the muck? Easy, just refocus the waters into one area and your boat will be happily bobbing along in no time at all. When the waters of the river or the energies of your life are focused, you will be stronger, deeper and cooler ☺ too.
Where are you stuck in the muck? Are the waters of your life focused on where you want to go rather than just blindly bobbling along hoping for the best? Many of us get into dry spots, forgetting that the gushing waters of abundance are just around the next bend. The trick is to remember that abundance is there for you and to not ever give up! When you’re 30,000 feet above your life looking down, it’s easy to see. It’s only when your feet are in the muck as you’re carrying the raft that life can appear to be difficult. Remember that when you’re in the dry part, you’re just a section away from more abundant waters- keep paddling!
I watched the river for what seemed like a long time, paid attention to my thoughts and smiled. My friend was right. A crusty, winding and somewhat mucky river in Texas had something to teach me, and I was grateful for the lesson. My energies are staying focused on what I want in life, not the muck that sometimes shows up. I’m keeping my river strong so my raft will avoid the yuck and the muck of life. Happy paddling.