Written by Erin Pfahler
“... character -- the willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life -- is the source from which self-respect springs.”
Joan Didion, On Self Respect
As I embark upon my 33rd revolution around our sacred Sun, I am overwhelmed by the many feelings that accompany me at the beginning of another journey. 33 years feels like a long time as I weigh it in my human mind -- then again, I feel, for the most part, in better physical health than I can ever recall feeling, and although I am blessed to have experienced some incredible things in my time on this planet, I certainly don't feel very wise or particularly accomplished. As I assess the reality of this miraculous existence, and that 33 years is, really, not very much time at all, it seems perfectly understandable that, to quote one of my favorite songs by Railroad Earth, "I still got a long way to go"...
That said, I have been meaning, for quite some time, to sit down and provide my loved ones with an update on what I've been up to over these past adventurous 12 months, and just where it is I am headed. I'm not sure I have answers, but I'll try....
Life is made of fleeting here and nows
Joys and sorrows
Valleys and summits
Questions and moments of clarity
Through it all, the river flows
Drop by drop into the miraculous vastness of eternity
I remember standing on the water's edge
Then, dipping my toes in
Slowly I learned to submerge myself, inch by inch
One day, perhaps, I will understand that I am the river; the river is me.
Molly Jo Stanley
Educating for Mindfulness and Sustainability