Alive

There’s something beautiful about the wind. About the way it changes things. A powerful force we cannot see, but we can feel. We can see the way the wind has an effect on things. Our hair blowing in our faces, the leaves spreading through the street, the sand covering our blanket on the beach.

The wind has always been intriguing to me. The way that it changes everything it interacts with. I want to be like the wind.

My favorite quote by Paulo Coelho in The Alchemist holds a powerful statement “The boy felt jealous of the freedom of the wind and saw that he could have the same freedom. The only thing holding him back was himself.”

We have the ability to go where we want, to see what we want to see, to do what we want to do. Yet for some reason, we live our lives revolved around what other people will think. What other people want.

Now don’t get me wrong. I love people. I love making people happy. Almost so much that it allows hardly any room to check in on my own happiness. I’m working on changing that. But what if we lived with the intention of changing the people we interact with for the better. To inspire them to live a full and happy life.

Find the thing that brings you life. Make it a point to do this thing often. Be selfish, because if you don’t – you’re going to miss out on the opportunity to inspire others to find their piece of happiness.

I can ride a bike and be happy as the wind rushes through my hair. I can send a route in the gym and be stoked. I can drink a morning cup of coffee and feel like my whole day will be good. I can go on a long drive at night and gaze at the stars, remembering how small I am. I can bundle up and walk through the falling leaves laughing just to see my breath in the cold air. None of these things are bad, these are things that I love. Things I enjoy spending time doing. But they aren’t enough.

When I am in the mountains I come alive. There is something about solitude. About climbing a peak and reaching the top, seeing where I came from and where I’m heading. Something about knowing there will always be more mountains to climb. There is something about dirt covered finger tips and yelling at the top of my lungs with only my echo to reply. There is something about wanting to give up but pushing on because when I make it to the top and I take a deep breath, I will finally feel alive again.

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I fear that too many people disregard the things that bring them life. I fear that people are missing out because they are too busy, they have too many obligations, they are afraid to be selfish, or they are afraid to try.

Everyone deserves to feel alive. Days, weeks, months are hard. Life isn’t easy on any of us. People are suffering with depression, suicidal thoughts, abusive partners, eating disorders, addictions, absent parents, mental illness, loneliness, and so much fear. Everyone is going through something. You are going through something. Whether or not you’re sharing that pain with someone else only you know.

Life is really, really hard. That is why its so important to have your one thing that brings you life. Your escape to remind you what it feels like to be alive.

When I come back from the mountains I have the ability to reach people who are hurting. To inspire people. To help people. I get to be like the wind – I get to change every person I interact with because I have enough life to give until the next time I make it to the mountains.

When you forget to focus on your happiness – let the wind remind you.

You will finally feel alive again.

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