Trail Medicine

Sometimes when the world gets too loud, I wonder what I’m doing here. I am a raw, open heart wandering around and I don’t seem to fit. Then I go visit Mama Nature (my church), and I effortlessly blend in.

Church did not disappoint this morning. My favorite trail. Magic happens here and I feel at home. I often get weepy here. Sacred space. Grounded and centered.

This moss. I’m obsessed with its colors and softness and tiny world. A survivor that thrives on hardly anything. If I was a fairy, I’d pick this log to make my own. I want to crawl inside and smell all the things and lay down on its soft mossy goodness.

These baby pine cones. The stem looks like two arms holding two worlds. Can I hold them both? Yes, with a strong stem. Tethered.

These heart rocks. Within 10 minutes of walking my hands were full of heart rocks, my little God-winks. My little tell from the Universe. “I see you. I hear you. You are held. You are loved. You matter.” No matter how many I gather there are always more. Abundant. I keep one or two and leave the rest behind in the nooks of trees or the banks of the stream.

This placard. Everything serves a purpose. It’s all working together. A perfect symphony. Except the conductor can’t be seen. Only felt.

Two hawks fly over head. Take the long view.

A squirrel busily buries acorns that he’ll soon forget. Sow the seeds anyway.

The forest is about balance. Maybe my own purpose is about balance, too. Balance the hard in the world by being soft. Balance the loud by being quiet. Balance the false by being true.

Quiet does not mean acquiescence. True does not mean naive.


Moss won’t grow on busy pavement.

When I first visited this forest decades ago, I thought it was very plain. I was used to the manicured plants and blooms of other gardens. But now I appreciate and crave the natural beauty here. The native plants that don’t need heavy sculpting. Authentic Beauty.

Trail medicine. Forest medicine.

Be you, beautifully.

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