Settling In

For 14 days and 14 nights, this was my view. Trees. A scrape of sky.  Firepit flames.

I shared a tent with my two kids, within arms reach of the tent my partner shared with his son, and for 14 days and 14 nights I barely spoke to another person. (Red squirrels, chipmunks and fungus not included.)

I’m not going to lie. The first couple days were tough. For me, mostly. I had packed a hangover of anxious feelings and combined that with a new way of living that I didn’t quite understand, which created a fair amount of resistance.

But somewhere around day 3, I settled in.

And then I continued to settle.

We only checked our phones once/day in case of real world emergencies. I never really knew what time it was and around the halfway mark, I lost track of the day. It felt good. I settled deeper into this new type of freedom.

We didn’t shower. Not once in 14 days. We had daily swims in the lake instead. I’d spend about an hour floating on my back, staring up at the endless sky and watch the clouds blend into dragons, puppy dogs and alligators. With my ears just below water level, I could hear the muffled sound of laughter from my family getting louder until …. splash! It was bliss.

We made up countless ridiculous songs and dances, played a ridiculous amount of games and read a ridiculous amount of books. I perfected the art of cowboy coffee. I started listening more. We all stared some fears straight in the eye and roared. There were stumbles and bumps as we practiced how to move together and find common ground.

And for 14 days and 14 nights, we settled in.


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