February 5, 2014.
Look well into thyself;
Look well into thyself;
there is a source of strength which will always spring up
if thou wilt always look there.
I have been listening to the weather reports and more snow is on its way. I have to say January was a month I seemed to have struggled with. The sheer amount of snow we have had, the incredibly low temperatures and those biting winds have kept me out of the bush and exploring more than I would have liked. Last week I made a point of going out there at least four times early in the morning. The temperatures are a little more normal and a bit warmer and I honestly need to surround myself with this place no matter what the elements may bring to clear my mind and workout things I am struggling with.
There have been many challenges in my life lately and I thought last year was tough but it looks like 2014 is not going to be as easy as I thought and had hoped for. I vow to make the most of the good parts by surrounding myself with nature and observing what goes on back there in my wilderness, it has so much to teach. Over the years it has certainly taught me lessons and reminds me every time I venture back there that there are lots of struggles in life but you make the most of things and get through them the best way you know and it will all work out. I need to keep going there with that belief in my heart. It is all in the way I choose to look it.
The snow in the bush is very deep in most places except out in the open, I sink down about a foot in the fresh fallen snow to stand on the base of two feet of old snow and another six inch layer of ice that has never melted from the ice storm we had near our Christmas, oh yes great for snowshoeing but I have to say it is hard work while I struggle to pack those trails down. Imagine a gigantic stair climber machine at the gym and lifting your legs a foot high with every step. It is a real workout. When I do manage to get back to the house I can certainly “feel the burn” and I for the most part love it, it transports my thoughts from the struggles I sometimes think are overwhelming. Thinking of family and friends who are certainly struggling with life right now, weighs heavy on my heart. I trudge through the snow wishing there was more I could do.
I have been following the deer trails and I can see where they have been also struggling. With the deep snow and that impenetrable layer of ice below there is not much for them to eat. They wander from cedar tree to cedar tree stripping the bark and eating the greenery. The snow under the cedars is littered with the cedar bits, and if there happens to be a bare patch of ground where the snow and ice have not yet covered it is stripped to bare frozen ground. Deer cannot easily digest hay and it has to be a pretty bad winter for them to mingle with our cows and eat the hay. There have only been two winters in my 35 years here on the farm that I have seen that so I do know it is not as bad as those winters long ago, yet.
I make a point every morning I venture out to break a trail over top of the deer tracks so they will not have to struggle to get everywhere they need to be. I cannot follow every trail because as we all know some struggles must be tackled alone but I help where I can. It is a lot like life….. we all have struggles and we should accept the help when we are offered but most struggles at one time or another need to be gone through alone so that we can learn to handle them if they happen to come around again. A helping hand is always an appreciated thing but ultimately, to live we must also learn to cope and find our own way.
I tromp through the snow breaking trail and circle around and come back to where I began, I could see how the deer have already been following behind and used my helping hand but there was a point where they ventured out on their own path in another direction to find what they need to get through their own struggles.
I came across where four deer had bedded down for the night to rest so they will be able to tackle life again tomorrow, one step or one day at a time. It will all work out we both just have to believe that and keep going. Oh I love it back here, the lessons are endless.