This area in Sequoia National Park used to be blanketed in development: cars, a gas station, grocery store, parking lots, a multi-building historic lodge. Now most of that is gone, demolished, cleared out. The park service rewilded it, for the sake of the sequoias and the whole ecosystem that depends on them.
You could think of mindfulness and living in the now as a rebuke of dwelling on what happened way back when, but the present is not ignorant of the past. You can let the yesterday overwhelm you so you’re paralyzed today, or you can use the past to inform your present and future.
Like the sequoia grove of this Giant Forest, we can never fully undo the damage and trauma of our past, but we make a choice to learn from it as we charge into a better future.
The path ahead looks treacherous.
The trees above insanely immense.
There’s no end in either sight.
But there must be an end, right?
A present ruled by an unknown fear,
An opaque future, never quite near.
And yet, we all move forward.
Skipping gayley toward.
Sometimes light hits the right step.
Next a stumble in a black abyss.
Move because of ego.
Move because you can’t let go.
Move because of true confidence.
Movement masquerades as cowardice.
Move since we don’t know any better.
Just another shark in the water.
Exhausted from swimming, terrified to stop.
Push and persevere, squinting at the tree top.
One day we’ll get there and find clarity.
Or at least that’s what I keep saying to me.
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