When You Can’t

There’s a load of laundry in the dryer that needs to be folded and a load in the washer that needs to be moved to the dryer but I can’t do that. I can’t get out of my chair because my can’t put my book down.

When I am reading a good book it’s as if my mind has left the physical world and stepped into a different world, leaving my body as a shell with eyes that look up from time to time. I become so engrossed that I can no longer hear the sounds of my own environment or what’s going on around me. A building could fall down around me and I wouldn’t notice. Today my family senses that I have again been entranced by a good book so they finish their breakfast, clean up their dishes and go about their day. I am still there reading my book.

It’s a sunny day with a clear blue sky and I know I should be outside but I can’t go. My mind is paralyzed. I can’t put my book down. My husband asks, “Are we going hiking or not”. I know I need to go hiking because stepping into the woods has lately become my way of recharging my battery in preparation for the week to come. The walls are closing in on me now and I begin to have a small panic that no one else can see. Do I put my book down and go hiking or just keep reading?

Ordinarily I would just trudge through the book and be done with it so I can rejoin my own world but today I did put the book down. It was becoming violent and I needed to process what was going on. Plus I couldn’t take my hike away from myself.

My daughter couldn’t go hiking because she’s studying for finals so I went hiking with my husband and son. Each of us entered the woods with our minds full of whatever. As we hiked, we allowed the sound of the breeze through the trees, the flowing river, dirt, sweat, bugs, rocks, climbing over branches, crossing rivers, dipping our feet in the river, steep climbs and green all around us, nature;  wash the whatever out of our heads.

I can’t speak for my husband and son but I emerged from the woods with a mind a peace. I came home and finished my book.

The book I couldn’t put down today was: Fourth of July Creek by Smith Henderson

 

 

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