I think I was driving through Louisiana. I was tired. I was alone. I was wallowing in sadness.
After a short visit with the folks, I had driven all night leaving behind my family, what was no longer my home, and my dear friend Kade. Kade was my ‘ride or die’ whom I had shared months of spectacular adventures with, on the road. Anyone, weary and lonely, could travel into the rabbit hole of sadness under these conditions. I knew that I was treading on seriously dangerous territory, having bipolar disorder. A trip down that rabbit hole, for me, means violent mood swings – a wild pendulum flinging from high to low, that has repeatedly wrecked my life and almost taken it.
I have worked through Dialectal Behavior Therapy workbook, identifying my triggers and creating an action plan to prevent a deep slide. Action, early on, is necessary. If I let my mood swings take hold of me, stopping it is like grabbing on the rear bumper of a car in neutral rolling down a steep hill. I MIGHT slow it down, but I’m going to get hurt and banged up along the way.
So I pull off the highway, and search for a lake in google maps – found one. Looks big. “Great!” I say. I can catch the sunrise and meditate next to the shore. Use some tools in my tool bag to rewire my thought process and center myself. As I meditated next to the lake, one of the most spectacular spiritual awakenings happened. My tears of sadness that I arrived with, quickly turned to tears of joy, love, and gratitude. I was centered, I set up my hammock and slept a bit, I continued my 1800 mile road trip that changed my life. I’ll write more about that as we continue this journey together.
After my meditation, I was inspired to write. I’ll include that below:
He checks in with his ‘ride or die’ as he had hundreds of times before – over the past 7 months.
A chilling shadow of sadness begins to set over him, as the new idea washes in – this is a complete solo adventure. His dear friend is on his own path, now.
He no longer has someone to keep him grounded, share mystical adventures, senseless laughter, silly jokes, breathtaking scenery, and endless adventure .
Then a smile returns. He looks up as the sky crests with yellow and orange, from the rising sun. Feels the warmth of the first rays of light. He feels the fulfilling sence that he is never alone. God, the Universe, Fate… whatever one calls it… never leaves our side. Even when we have ventured off our path, the road signs are always there to guide us back.
True as it is: there is fear in the unknown, the unknown is part of the adventure, and life is a series of adventures. But, he has faith. Faith that he is on the right path. Faith that he will be provided for. Faith that this is where he needs to be. Faith that the challenges, ahead, are for him to learn and grow and move forward.
The smile stretches across his face, the shadow of sadness is replaced with excitement. The sun continues to rise and light the way, as he sits in awe of the gifts of Mother Nature.
He is now ready to drive forward – into the unknown.
To see the full collection of photography, used in this feature image, please click the link below: