August 20, 2019
Something about being lost in the wilderness both frightens and inspires. Take it from me.
It’s our first full day in the secret treasure that is Mark’s AirBnB 30 minutes outside of Cortez. An untouched wilderness sits just beyond a brown picket fence. Just beyond a well-manicured lawn and thoughtfully placed decor is a formidable land. That juxtaposition of the two spaces, the tamed and wild, was one we should have considered a bit more close.
We left for the wilderness of these Colorado canyons early. What awaited us was splendor as soon as we began. Rocks slithered up and down hillsides with varying degrees of altitude gain. Threads of erosion extended just beyond the trail. The trail itself was lost in the terrain and had to be followed exactly.
This is where we faltered.
After a half hour of meandering, we found ourselves in the grave position of not knowing where we were at all. This state lasted for a good hour after discovery.
Being lost in the wilderness is odd. You are both uncertain and confident as you pine for the lost piece to the puzzle. Your mind hyper focuses on the task at hand and your emotions run free from your control. Anger and impatience are at odds within you and aim themselves for whomever is nearest.
Then something occurs that is odder still. The mind relaxes, the emotions cease their tumult and you are at peace with the situation. You sit on a rock and look at the beauty of the world around you. Your breath is taken away not by exhaustion but by a euphoric realization that, all of a sudden, you are an invalid.
Maybe that’s just me.
As I sat looking up at the Ute mountain off in the distance, I felt the transformative power that exists out there away from society. This is a world we developed to exist outside of but our roots still exist there. Those roots hold wisdom and tapping into them from a desperate place was what I needed.
Eventually we found our way back. I wouldn’t be writing this if we hadn’t. Though it was frightening at first, we both took what we could from the experience and are better for it.
Go ahead and try it. Get lost and see where your head goes. You might find something you never knew you were looking for. For me, it was a connecting of dots that I once thought had no relation to one another at all. How lovely!
Lemons to lemonade, people.