New Battery

 It was my last morning at my favorite ranch in South Dakota, Circle View Ranch.  I did not want to leave as I slowly walked around the house savoring the last sunrise.  This was the day my ever flexible itinerary had me driving to Nebraska.  The Escape was all packed.  After saying goodbye to my housemates and the ranch family, I jumped in the car with my book on CD selected.  I press the start button, because the car doesn’t even have a real key.  I swear, after 5 years, it still is odd not to have keys dangling by the steering column. Magically, nothing happened to the engine. A few lights came on the dash with a message to call the dealer.

Looking out the window, I take in the incredible horizon and smile.  Of course the car won’t start.  That would be the only way that I would get to spend more time at the Circle View Ranch.  The dealer informed me that a new battery was in need.  I took the steps to call AAA, which I was delighted to have renewed before this trip!  The closest help was about 2 hours away.  I am certain that the AAA call center has never heard such excitement at a long wait.

Excitedly, I returned to my friends and was happy to have a few more hours on the ranch.  In that moment, I was stranded in one of my very favorite places.  I pulled out my laptop, made coffee and set up to blog on the porch.  It was heavenly.  As the other guests left to start their adventures, I settled into relaxing.  After a few hours, the tow truck showed up, gave the car a jump and off I went.  It was all perfect in timing.  Apparently the battery had about 2 more days of life in it before it bit the dust.

While in Illinois the battery needed to be replaced.  Apparently the Escape’s placement of the battery requires damn near everything to be removed in order to get to it.  I knew that it would be interesting when 4 of the workers looked under the hood, bent down to get a better idea of what was needed to get to the batter, and all rose back up shaking their heads in wonder.  It took a team of trained workers to give my car a new battery and get it back on the road.

The entire experience is beyond interesting to me.  I took this month long trip to recharge my emotional batteries through moving my body in nature with hikes and yoga.  I made sure to surround myself with loving family and friends intermittently throughout this trip.  Additionally, there were new adventures where I made new friends and explored areas I’ve never been too.  I was in a place before my trip that was much like the car needing a jump start to get the last bit of life out of it. When I threw in the towel and surrendered to the need of an extended vacation, support came from everywhere.  My job, friends and family were amazing in helping me to make this trip happen.  This trip is similar to the car needing help from others to get the job done right.

Sometimes we need more than a jump start in life. Sitting still for awhile and allowing life to unfold before you is much like having a dead battery.  You aren’t going anywhere, so you might as well do what you can to calm down and soak up the environment.  The new battery came just before my last stop on my way home.  The new battery for the car came just as my heart, soul and body felt fully recharged with joy.  Upon arrival home, I was ready to get back in the game of my day to day life.

New batteries for me and the Escape all at the same time; I love how the Universe works.  Sometimes it really is literal, yet it still makes me smile as I shake my head.  My goal now that I have the new batteries is to make space in my life for more adventures.  We shall see what shows up now!

Namaste!

Kristin Springfield
Fully Recharged

 

The power of red sparkle

Red sparkle is my very favorite color.  Seeing it makes my heart smile.  As silly as that sounds, it is true.  My daughter, Kenzie, loved the color when she was a little girl more than I ever could.  She wore red sparkle shoes every single day from the moment she started walking until middle school.  We all remember what it was like to be in middle school with the power of what other people think.  Unfortunately, that is when the tradition of red sparkle shoes went into retirement.

After returning home from a road trip, I go through a period of making space in my house and attic.  I continue to focus on lightening my load in order to make moving easier in the future.  My favorite thing to collect in life is tax receipts from Goodwill.  I found myself in the attic over the weekend going through boxes when I found the infamous red sparkle shoes.

Watching Kenzie as a child dance, run and play through life in those shoes were the highlights of motherhood.  Stumbling upon the shoes in a box reminded me of those wonderful days and made my heart sing and dance.  This discovery brought me back to a place in time when I lived with a magical dancing free spirited little girl who loved red sparkle shoes no matter what others thought!

Upon examination of the shoes, the stories of life lived in them is told in the way they were worn.  Most have very little sparkle left on the toes due to playground adventures.  Some have mud on them from hiking.  For what proud girl does not hike in mud in her favorite shoes.  I actually remember a time when one shoe was almost lost to a mud pit.  Others have worn out heels from sliding into base in gym.  Yet all of them were worn with the intent to squeeze every ounce of joy out of each moment.  I want to do all of those things within the spirit of my life!  Let’s all wear the glitter off our toes, have marks of mud and adventures all over our bodies, while sliding into the later stages of life by the edges of our heels.  An amazing a life we would all have.

Thank you, Kenzie, for being you and reminding us to live life in such a magical way!

Namaste!

Kristin Springfield
Red Sparkle Lover

Anxiety meets the tipping point

Wow!  I may have actually reached the tipping point with acceptance of life.  I am a planner by nature, but not a detail oriented planner.  For example, plans for my recent road trip included destinations and sleeping location. There were no plans made for each destination except to be in nature.  Exactly what that would look like was pretty loose.  I wanted to listen to my heart and body each day for what it needed, and then do that.

I left Virginia with a plan to go back to Glacier National Park. I wanted to visit Bowman Lake again. The day I sat at the water’s edge in 2015 was filled with acceptance of life while experiencing amazement of such natural beauty. I designed the trip to revisit Jack the Jackass in the Badlands as well. Every other stop was decided with the intent to get there and back without insane driving days.

My second stop along my 2017 road trip, was in Illinois visiting my brother on the way to Sioux Falls, SD.  I awoke to a friend sending a link of information about Montana being on fire and Glacier’s evacuation.  Hmmm, that may change my trip completely, I thought to myself.  Even though, I kidded with friends that I may not return.  I was referring to me continuing my journey to California, not being caught by fire.

Sharing this with my brother and his beloved, we broke out maps to reconstruct the trip with the main goal being at the forefront; walk in nature.  Within a matter of hours, I redesigned the trip while listening to my heart.  At one point in the process of regrouping, I felt tightness in my heart.  With taking a breath to listen to the quite voice of my heart it asked me to go sit outside.  Around the fire pit there are beautiful trees.  I leaned back in the chairs to look at the trees and take in the spectacular sky.  With breathing quietly and listening, my heart said, “You need to drive a bit as well.  Let’s go to the edge of South Dakota.  We can hike in the naked mountains of the Badlands and the dense forest of the Black Hills.” I calmly listened and followed my heart.

After new reservations of where I’d sleep in what town were all done I returned to the fire pit.  This time my brother joined me.  He sat and abruptly shared how amazed he was with how calm I was during the whole process.  He even shared that he would most likely go with the original plan regardless of the fires or needless danger.  Simply because he planned it, he’d go come hell or high water.  Well, it would be fire in this instance.  He made a comment that my medication was certainly working.  I smiled as I turned to him and said, “I am not on any medication.”  He responds, “Really?  That is amazing; something is certainly working great for you!  I am proud of you.”

In that moment I realized that the tipping point of leaving unwarranted anxiety and fear behind has finally been reached!  All of the years of therapy, writing, shining light in the darkest areas of my life, listening to my heart, hiking in nature, practicing yoga and meditation have paid off for me.  There never is a quick fix, and certainly not an an overnight success story.  My overnight success took me about a decade of nights to get here today.  I am just able to experience the layering effect of those practices.  It is pretty amazing when you can roll with the ever changing tides of life.  My trip changed drastically several times along the way.  There is still anxiety when things have to change, but I trust the process far more than I trust my anxiety and fear.  As a result of the changes, the trip was spectacular and better than anything I could have ever planned; much like all of the amazing experiences of life.  I will return to Glacier National Park one day, it was just not meant to be on this trip.

Namaste!
Kristin Springfield
Surrendering to life with gratitude