mt audubon - a hike up to 13,223'

Yesterday, I experienced my first 13er (as they are known among mountain climbers) and it was awesome. I have yet to knock out my first 14er (14,000 ft.), but we don't leap past the bottom three steps of stairs on our way to the top, now do we? Two years ago when I moved to Boulder, I started with 10,000 ft, then 11, and many times up to 12,000 ft. Yesterday I reached a goal, and now there is no where to go but up. Way up!

The climb starts easy enough through forest and a few mild switchbacks. I stopped here to take in Mitchell lake from above. 


Vast and ruggedly beautiful landscape. 

I asked for a rest, and Finn obliged. My wonderful eight month old pup, is proving to be a perfect hiking companion. Agile, willing, adventurous, curious, loyal and fun. And as he matures, guardian as well. The rocky terrain was no problem for this mountain goat of a dog. 

On summit.  A zoom-in of the neighboring mountain tops.  One can really appreciate the term "Rockies" when standing atop one of these massive rock formations that reach high to the heavens.  Thirteen thousand feet is far from the tallest of the world's mountains, but no less awe inspiring when looking down from the top, across for miles and miles of jagged peaks, and up to skies of sparkling blue. 

Live life wonderful. Every single day, in any way you can. 


like looking up and getting dizzy

© ann marie/ 2013

© ann marie/ 2013

The passage of time is sometimes like looking up and getting dizzy. You know you are standing upright, feet firmly on the ground, but as you gaze upwards the world around you begins to swirl slowly, your senses becoming blurred. 

We are sometimes knocked off track, distracted from the life we are meant to live. Days pass, fading into weeks and months and we are left to stomach the truth that we've been sitting on the bench instead of playing in the game. Watching as others make strides that we thought we'd be making. Wishing for second chances at missed opportunities and hoping for do-overs. 

What would it be like if we had no concept of time? No understanding of hours. Would we be freer to pursue that which we seek, having no sense of loss of time? 

With each passing year, I become more and more aware of how much time I've been alive, and more and more suspect of the time I may still have ahead of me. We refer to a personal act of bad behavior when we remark, "I've been wasting time."  Time is only wasted if we feel it so. 

Let go the notion of wasted time.

At the mere mention of the word "meditate" my mind begins to run amok, but I keep trying this practice of being calm, resting in peaceful thoughtless bliss. About half the time I meditate, I'm successful. The other half I'm a miserable failure if you consider the the goal. My meditating thoughts are sometimes like a laser light show- bright, pulsing, fast and all over the place. If meditating is meant to bring about profound realizations however, I'd say I found the golden ticket. I laid down my weapons of self-deprecation and allowed my mind to dream, plan, envision, puzzle, explore. To anticipate my future, my desires, my goals and to contemplate my purpose. 

We should all stop feeling as though we are wasting time when our thoughts and actions lead to a better us. If this means we stop creating for a while because our hearts just aren't in it, fine. If this means that we spend time sitting mindlessly in front of the TV because we are weary from life's traumas, more power to us. If we decide to take our vacation day and do nothing with it other than sit in quiet reflection, have we wasted time?

How we spend our time is our choice, and I hope that we all learn how to walk beside time, instead of chasing after it.

I've been taking a long break from creating, from writing here on my blog. Some days I get anxious about the time that I'm allowing to pass without making headway on my goals. But for my mental health, I've had to use time to heal, to rest. I've been choosing to take time to just be, with no tangible outcome. 

I've been feeling dizzy lately by the passage of time. find your peace.