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Day 304 - Swimming In It...

Sometimes I just can’t help but swim in it. The thoughts, the feelings, the heaviness. I am pulled there and since I don’t seem to be able to find an exit, I swim there...often until I am in danger of drowning in it.


However yesterday was a day of wondrous swimming. We drove through a grove of redwoods and happened upon a transom bridge. I love transom bridges. I have no idea why, I just do. On the other side of the river, there was a small place to pull off. It called to me so off I pulled which led me to decide to get out and stretch our legs. Traffic was not really a concern since we were the only ones there, so we walked the bridge to see what we could see.


What we found was a place to swim in it, in only the best way. The South fork of the Little Eel River was ours...and ours alone. Not a soul around and ours for the short but steep hike to the bottom. So off we went.


It was crisp and cool but not cold. We walked the shallow water to find a deeper pool. It wasn’t long before we were swimming in it. It was a sunny hot day and the water was delightful and refreshing. We found a rock to jump off of and spent some time just being there at the river’s invitation and insistence. I have learned that when a meandering stream invites you in, go you must.


My daughter, dog and I swam in it. All the pristine beauty, we drank it in and let it permeate our being. It reminded me that I always have a choice about what to swim in and what not to swim in. I am struck how much I often insist on swimming in muck and mire, when I could always pass that by and find something clearer and less swampy.


No matter, it always feels like I have no choice in the moment. I see it and down I go into the abyss that seems to beckon me to paddle out and linger. My time in the Little Eel reminded me that I always have a choice about what I swim in. If I choose to dive into murky, dangerous and deadly waters, I alone am responsible for that choice. I always have available to me the option to just pass it by. Give up those waters to other muck swimmers, and myself choose something clearer or truer.


So I swam in it and it led me here. Where I write to you about it and let you know that sometimes swimming in it is the best thing one can do. Sometimes, soaking in the gentle waters of a mountain spring can remind you of all that you have lost, all that you have found and all that is in between. Sometimes you can find yourself, in perfect form, as you swim in it once more.




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