Oasis in the desert

I am back in Moab after spending 5 months in Sioux Falls, SD.  It feels simply spectacular to be back here.  This place is where peace washes over me with a force that can’t be ignored.  My beloved friend, Erin, has created a place for me to call my desert home.  The experience of being here allows the lingering worries to be washed away.  This trip provided the opportunity to literally do just that.

Erin takes me on incredible hikes that seem to always end in a delightful oasis that only the locals know.  This means that we rarely see people and have opportunities to swim and sunbathe without interruption.  We went on two hikes along the Mill Creek trail, each ending at a pool of waterfalls.  The water was freezing!  Actually, it made the “ceremony” more invigorating.   Submerging yourself in cold water has a way of making you let go of all that does not serve you.  You are completely present in what you are doing at that moment.  There is no room for the mental garbage that may have made it along the hike with you.

I set an intention just before stepping into the cold waters, “I release all that does not serve me.  I set free all of the emotional demons that continue to suffocate my joy.  I honor and let go of the old wounds, for they no longer need to set the pace of my present.”  Squealing with delight, a touch of fear, and exasperation of the sensation of the cold, I stepped into the water.  Erin guided me through the navigation of this particular spot in an effort to prevent injury on the slippery rocks.  Having a loving guide makes releasing something easier.  Placing my hands on the side walls of this water channel, I took a deep breath as I thought of my intention, and submerged my entire body into the water.  The rush of water over my head, past my ears, and over my body felt amazing in every way imaginable.  Standing back up to catch my breath,  I hollered with relief as my eyes returned to Erin.  She was cheering me on just as I did for her moments before.

We laughed like little girls and enjoyed each moment.  Drying out in the sun provided the opportunity to share how we have grown and fallen more in love with our authentic selves.  Funny, how it takes about 40 years to do so!

The next day we hiked to the other side of the creek to a different waterfall area where the water was somewhat warmer due to the flow path over slick rock.  I could barely tell the difference, but gladly accepted a few degrees more of warmth.  This new oasis invited another submerging experience.  This time my intention was about allowing love to flow into my life.  As I stood in this new place my intention flowed with ease to my heart. “I open my heart to love and invite all that is meant to come into my life to nourish my highest self.”

Again, Erin coached me through this new waterfall with love and kindness.  There was squealing and laughter just as I submerged myself into this cleansing experience.  As I stood up, I faced the sun with my eyes closed and a smile on my face after I caught my breath, gratitude and pure joy filled me completely.  Gratitude has never felt so good!

I have no idea if this feeling is peace, but I really like it!

Truly Loving This Moment,

Kristin

Leaving home

Yesterday I left my Sioux Falls home.  Tears flowed as I pulled away.  Having yearned for the feeling of home for so long, finding it and then I just left it.  What the hell is wrong with me?  Granted the invitation is there for me to come back.  It was also a wonderful snapshot in time and was never meant to be forever.  Is anything meant to be forever?  Except being with ourselves, of course.  I am beginning to think this life path is all about coming home to ourselves and loving ourselves to pieces just as we are.  I am getting there; if that is the purpose.  Honestly, what I want more than anything is a partnership, and I have them in very different ways. Maybe I have been looking at the closed door of a romantic partnership so long that I forgot to turn around to see all of the other open doors and windows.  So far the partnerships seem to magically show up and stay for a mysterious amount of time and then vanish.  Yet these partnerships are not romantic.

May 4th, I pulled up to my Sioux Falls home without any expectation just filled with hope and delight.  Within 15 minutes of meeting Jess and Tom, they decided to keep Journey and me for the summer.  I was selected, chosen, invited and included.  All of the things I have been begging the universe for simply showed up in a completely unexpected way.  Here, I have been looking for this experience in a romantic relationship, which clearly has not shown up and is probably the best thing for me in this phase of life.  I just can’t believe I left.  Sure I can say it was time to move on and that I have another job awaiting me in a place that I chose to spend my winter.  But in this case, it is me that left this incredible place and feeling not someone leaving me.

Jess and Tom gave me a gift that I was to open later, which was a good thing.  The card and necklace touched my heart in a way that immediately made me sob. Being truly seen, witnessed, heard and enjoyed authentically has been a struggle for a great many years.  I have a gift when it comes to not allowing myself to feel that kind of love in my direction, especially for my goofy authentic self.  Somewhere along the path of this life,  I agreed with the false belief that I am not worthy and certainly not good enough to receive love.  As I bust apart that ridiculous lie, love comes rushing in from all angles.  I am so grateful for all of this love, but I have to admit, I lack experience in knowing how to stand still and absorb it.  I get squeamish and have a difficult time making direct eye contact as incredible words are said to me.  I just keep opening my heart with my eyes wide open in order to absorb every morsel of love.  Just bear with me as I am still learning.  There is a part of me that just wants to shake my shoulders while saying, “Get it through your thick head, YOU ARE LOVED and are WORTHY!  Now get busy letting it in!!”

So here I am in another magical place, Circle View Guest Ranch, where I am loved by people and Jack, the Jackass.  I am greeted with hugs from humans and nuzzle kisses from the Donkey.  My heart just sings even louder as I let this love in.  My time off in between assignments is about collecting love from friends in preparation for finding my beloved Arizona family.  They are out there and will magically show up in a completely different and unexpected way.  The only requirement for me is to be me with my heart open.  Sounds easy enough right?  Yikes!

The connection shows up as needed, I suppose.  Just last night I sat out on the patio watching the incredible sunset.  My plan was to stay outside to stargaze.  As the sky began to transition from sunset to stargazing, two other guests came over and asked to join me.  We stayed out late talking and laughing all about growing up in the 70s and 80s.  It felt amazing to laugh and carry on about “The Old Days”  before the internet and struggles that modern children will never have.  Who remembers calling information (#411) and asking school work questions to an actual human?  Google took the place of that. What about the struggle of phone privacy with a landline and a 25-foot long cord to hide in a closet so you could talk with your boyfriend?  I completely forgot about calling a specific number for the time and temperature.  It was an amazing connection that magically ended as they drove off this morning on their adventure.

I am finding home in moments rather than physical places.  Maybe I am finally onto something.  Could it be peace?  The greatest part about this phase in life is I am finally learning that you never really leave home, for the feeling is always within you.

Thank you so much to Jess, Tom, Jack the Jackass, The Kruse family and fellow guests for coming into my life to remind me of home and worthiness of love!

Truly,

Kristin

 

The lessons of Sioux Falls, SD

My time in Sioux Falls, SD is coming to a close. I have visited here 3 times, yet something in me wanted to live here for longer than a weekend.  I am delightedly grateful that opportunity presented itself in April.   I have had an amazing time here. The lessons are many! Let’s review what I learned or remembered while living here:

  1. I love living with people who are kind
  2. Hearing and saying “Good Morning”, “Have a great day”, “Good night”, “Coffee is ready” makes life so much more enjoyable to live
  3. Riding my bike from Spoke-N-Sport with streamers is joyful.  Having Journey run along beside me is even better.
  4. Sparkle encrusted glasses make sight more fun.  My prescription changed just enough to warrant new glasses.  When I put on my new specs, the world literally came into amazing focus.  Funny how that works!
  5. Taking myself on dates is a great practice and empowering.  Being a single woman has its’ peaks and valleys, yet I am determined to not let my relationship status dictate my adventures.  I found myself looking forward to solo dates.  I went wherever I wanted whenever I wanted and met incredible people along the way.  It turns out that it is fun dressing up no matter what.  Looks like, I may finally be embracing the desires of the young spirit that lives inside of me!
  6. Just go to the events you want to regardless.  This town is riddled with music festivals all summer long. The perk is that I ride my bike to many of them.  Yes, I have lights on the bike for my safe night time riding.
  7. I thrive in full family infiltration.  I rent a room from the most amazing couple in all of the land; Tom and Jessica Ries.  They are now my Sioux Falls family along with all of their family and friends.  This feeling of inclusion is by far the way I want to live my life.  I look forward to finding an Arizona family to take me in for the winter!
  8. Live music in a small bar is sweet!  If you get to Sioux Falls, be sure to visit Ferson on 8th on Friday’s, Remedy on 8th and Railroad on Saturday (well, any day is great there), and Bin 201.  I look forward to coming back ASAP; in the summer of course.  
  9. A thorough orientation is mandatory to set me up for success.  Because I have only worked for 3 companies during my 24-year career, I forgot how important the orientation is.  They may be boring, but make all the difference in the world when I have to get up to speed quickly.  
  10. I am a kinesthetic learner, MUST have an example, and have to perform the task at least once for it to stick.  You can talk to me all day long, but if I don’t actually do the task or play the game, you have wasted your breath.  
  11. Cooking and eating as a family makes eating worthwhile.  It has been delightful cooking for Tom and Jessica.  We have shared recipes and exposed each other to new things.  Apparently, I like to bake.  That is something I did not notice until Jess pointed it out.  What I really like is to eat sweets.  Since I am gluten free, tasty items need to be homemade.  
  12. First dates are educational for certain!  I have had a number of first dates over the past 6 months.  They have all been interesting to say the very least.  There are many things that should not be shared in the first 15 minutes of meeting someone. 
  13. Do NOT let someone leave ANYTHING with you before the 5th date.  It just makes it awkward.
  14. CH Patisserie has the very best macaroons I have ever had.  Vanilla and pistachio are the flavors I could consume all day!
  15. Biking in a dress is best with bike shorts.
  16. Amazon Prime is worth the money.
  17. AMT (Amy Miller Training) Yoga sculpt classes create results that are amazing, remember to take days off, or your body will scream at you
  18. Massages are worth the time and money when doing AMT 5 days a week
  19. Bean Bag tournaments are so much fun even when you suck at it
  20. Inclusion matters, so does exclusion.  Both say something to the person involved, be considerate and mindful of the message you send.
  21. Catan, Ticket to Ride and card games create a connection like nothing else can.  I lived with gamers (not the video kind)
  22. Marissa Reveland is amazing!  She is my recruiter and lifesaver from Med Travelers.
  23. Allowing space for loved ones to show up however and whenever they want to is very difficult, but necessary for growth.  Just keep breathing while you wait with the door to your heart open.
  24. Being ghosted hurts. Tell people when you are not interested 
  25. The Marco Polo app has allowed me to stay super connected with friends all over the country in a way that works for us.  Add the helium voice to the message and I am laughing for days.
  26. Comedy specials get me through some of the tough moments.
  27. Be still, breathe, and set yourself free.
  28. Nobody is watching or really cares about what you are doing.  Just live your life

I look forward to what the next 6 months have in store for me!

Cheers,

Kristin Springfield