I grew up in the Northwest. In Olympia, Washington. I never realized how lucky I was to grow up there until I went back this summer. Talk about beautiful! The Olympics to the west, the Cascades to the east, and a giant beautiful bay, Puget Sound, dotted with little islands. There are evergreen trees everywhere. Deer, hawks, and bald eagles are everywhere too. Everywhere!
As a kid, I spent a lot of time in the woods near my grandma’s house. Seriously, there were acres upon acres of dense woods. There were hills to explore, and creeks to wade in, rocks to climb, trees to climb, forts to make, and ghost stories to tell. I spent a large part of my childhood in those magical woods. I spent alot of time exploring with my brother and sister, and a few friends that lived on farms nearby. But I also spent alot of time alone in the woods. I had trees that were my friends and secret places I never shared with anyone.
We were really poor when I was growing up but that didn’t stop us from having adventures. My parents loved to camp. Our weekends were full of camping, hiking, and spending time in the woods. We hiked all over Mt Rainier, all over the Olympics, and while we definitely spent time ”car camping”, we also went on backpacking trips. Backpacking trips are the best. No cars, no buildings, no signs of the modern world. Carry everything in a backpack, hike a few miles, eat, explore. Hike a few more miles, eat again, explore again. Hike a little further, set up camp, eat, explore, stare into a warm fire, and sleep under the bright stars. All the time breathing in the magic.
Since I was very young, I would notice and connect with certain trees. I would talk to the trees, hug them, ask for wisdom and guidance, and I always felt a real and powerful connection. Even now (especially now), I find trees to spend time with. I close my eyes, breathe slow and deep, ask the tree if I may recieve healing. I place my hands on the trunk of a tree. I feel all the sensations as my energy and the energy of the tree merge on a deep level. I ask the tree to heal my wounds and grant me wisdom. I tell the tree all my worries, all my fears, all my secret desires, anything and everything that is on my mind. And the tree listens, and I feel better.
I am most relaxed and I feel my best when I am deep in nature. There is so much beauty and wisdom in a forest. Everything works together in harmony and the beauty found in nature is beyond words. When you are open, aware, and fully present you can feel the healing energy buzzing all around.
Living in South Florida is hard for me, there are buildings, roads, cars, and people everywhere. But I know there is a reason I am here. So I try to appreciate the beauty around me. My backyard has become a wild jungle. I have beautiful trees and plants, birds, butterflies, and bees that love my yard. There is a family of squirrels that hang out, a wild chicken that lives in the yard, and an occasional hawk that likes to land on my clothesline. Although the land here is very different, and the drive out of the city is a bit further, there are magical forests in Florida too.
Where ever you live, spend time in nature. Let go of your worries and just breathe. Practice yoga in the woods (yoga deep in the woods is like floating in paradise). Go camping. Hug and talk to trees, talk to the animals. Connect to the wisdom of our Mother. And bee happy. ~t