Two days ago I began my last day in Sedona with an early morning hike around Courthouse Rock and up on to Bell Rock.
There are several stories which are rich fodder for writing,
perhaps even a poem.
For now I will share one.
My goal was to go up Bell Rock.
I imagined it would be a zigzag path up the rock. I could see people at various levels of the rock. I wasn’t the only one who had the notion that this climb was do-able. This older couple, the man was walking with a cane, entered the path before me.
Shortly after I took this picture they turned back realizing the path was quite rugged. I was awed and inspired by them nonetheless. It was at least a mile and a half walk to this point, in some pretty hot Sedona sun.
For a bit, the trail was marked, until it wasn’t. I wandered back and forth trying to find the path of the trail. There was no trail at a certain point. It became a “forge your own way” adventure.
There were plenty of other people trying to make their way up this rock. At the first really big obstacle I talked with a sweet older couple from Yuma, Arizona. They turned back and strongly advised me to be careful. I told them I had promised my son I would be careful. And I persisted up past that spot. That spot required some belly work…I was inching my way up the rock crawling on my belly, very, very slowly.
I stopped under the shade of a tree to drink some water and started up a conversation with a young couple from Kansas City. They moved on as I sat a bit more. The lid to my water bottle slipped from my hand and instinctively I knew to NOT chase after it. I watched it roll and bounce down the path straight towards two young women. One woman tried to stop its motion….but much like me trying to stop a softball from going into the outfield, the lid rolled past her. Luckily it bounced into a bit of greenery and stopped. She sweetly walked back to it and brought it to me.
I had to examine the Bell Rock from many angles to find the next step up. I had to ponder carefully where I would put my next footstep. I found my spot and began to gain my foothold.
The kind woman who retrieved my water bottle lid was already to the next level and she called down to me to ask if I needed help up.
“No thank you,” I said.
I wasn’t being stubbornly independent or kindly polite.
I really, really needed to take this next step at my own pace. I already had my foot in place. I was trusting my body to know what felt comfortable and safe. I truly needed to keep at my own pace. I could not trust that someone else could help me at that point.
And there was my metaphor on life…..I’m just at a place in my life right now where I need to make my next steps at my own pace, in the direction my body tells me to go, without the help of anybody else.
Bell Rock is one of Sedona’s vortex sites. Before starting my hike I read this about the rock climb….
It is NOT necessary to go to the top of Bell Rock. Bell Rock has levels. Most people experience wonderfully uplifting and soaring experiences at just the first or second level. If you question should I go any higher, don’t. You have probably reached the level that is safest for you. Coming down try stepping side to side in difficult areas. If you are very uncomfortable, sit down and scoot over the steeper declines.
It proved to be sage advice. I found my stopping point here.
From that same article:
Bell Rock is one of Sedona’s most known Vortex Meditation sites. It is an Upflow area (also referred to as Electric or Masculine) that is best for serenity and solving problems from a higher (spiritual) perspective. For decades seekers from around the world have used Bell Rock for comtemplative reflection and inspiration.
I went on this walk with an intention to seek clarity.
It is 3:00AM and I have an 8 hour drive ahead of me with precious cargo to carry. I’m a tad bit frustrated that I cannot sleep. I very, very, very rarely cannot sleep. This whole trip I have had a high level of energy. The day prior to this day I saw the sun rise and I saw the sun set. It was amazing beyond words. I hope I never forget that day. It is 3:08 AM and I can feel an anticipation in my body that is like the Bell Rock climb…..I have a strong sense that it’s time to go to the next “forge your own way” move in my life.
The day prior to this day so many pieces came into play. I talked with my cousin about my father. I detached from the people I believe I am to detach from. I attached to the people I believe I am to attach to.
The day prior to this day was the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. Oh my God. Literally, “Oh my God.” You allowed me to see your sun rise and your sun set on the longest day of the year 2018. You brought people into my path who could watch me from the sidelines and encourage me as I walked this path the way I had to walk this path. All of the confusion of the past three years feels as if it is falling into line. And somehow I am scared that I am not good enough for the gifts You have been lining up for me. Suddenly all I want to do is fall in gratitude before your awesomeness.
My cousin told me something about my dad that I never knew.
I hope some day I can write on and on and on about the amazing life we are given.
But now…God please give me sleep, prepare me for this day. I love.