Friday, October 24, 2014

Hello, I'm Faith and I'm Here to Help Your Life Be Better

It’s nice to know there are still places out there
where you can run, scream, laugh, sing, dance, 
or just listen to the immaculate silence.
It’s nice to know that there are still places where you have
two day old braids encrusted with sand and chalky dust 
grimy faces and cracking lips and no reflections
sand that sticks between your toes
and no one to be bothered but arid lizards and desert mice. 
It’s nice to know that there are still places where you can
watch the sun come through the clouds and illuminate the landforms
scale sandy red giants to feel untainted wind
or lay on your back at night and feel like the stars will swallow you whole.

These are the places that restore us.

After one fourth of the school year, I have already become disorganized, overworked, and constantly exhausted. Especially because I was up till eleven last night doing homework, danced for an hour and a half today, and then babysat a three year old for two hours. But I can deal, thanks to an incessantly welcomed break last weekend.
It was extra long for us due to UEA, so my family took a six hour car trip down south. Towing Steve, the trusty pop-up trailer, and blasting Birdy, we ventured about six miles into Utah desert outside of a itty-bitty town called Escalante. This particular “campsite” (I hesitate to call it that because that implies #54 with generator plug-ins and unsanitary bathrooms ten feet away. This is just a relatively flat area with a game trail that could be mistaken for a road leading into it.) had been named “Turtle Rock” on a previous trip to the same area. It’s a gorgeous spot with landmark resemblant of a reptile with a shell. 
My focus for this trip was completely self-centered. Thursday through Sunday, I was the center of my universe. I wasn’t going to look in a mirror for the whole four days. If I was cold, I would put on a jacket, if I was tired, I would go to bed and if I was hungry, I would eat. There would be no connection with any humans other than the ones I was face to face with.
Using no makeup and wearing stripes and tie-dye together felt like the promised land. I sung and danced and climbed on rocks and walked around barefoot. I cried and laughed and didn’t brush my hair and hiked with people I love. I slept under the stars for the first time next to someone I’ve grown up with. It was fantastic. It makes the current toddler-induced burnout abundantly more bearable.

The reason I’m writing this post is to remind you to look after yourself. Often, we get wrapped up in grades, or work, or social media, or activities, or sports, or all of the above. We forget to listen to our bodies and minds because of all the demands placed on our drained shoulders. So here’s your formal invitation: Go find your Turtle Rock. Sort yourself out. Reorganize. Return. Radiate.

Gus, Coco, and Arlo - biggest to smallest.

Squirrel Scat, Smiling Sage, and Hyperactive Hedgehog (nature names)
heading up to Turtle Rock.
Turtle Rock from the Campsite

Campsite from Turtle Rock

Too many sunset pictures.

The other side of Turtle Rock
A disappointing picture of the stars.

A Not So Disappointing Picture of Lovely People

Slot Canyons: Not for the even slightly claustrophobic.

Cities of Cryptobiotic Soil

The end of the canyon

Gee, what's that? Another sunset?

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