Seven miles from my house, and about 1,500 feet above the valley I call home, is my oasis – my happy place.
I love to hike, it’s one of my favorite ways to exercise and push my body to get stronger. And all the while I get to clear my mind, find some inner peace, and take a break from the stressers in my life.
More often than not, I prefer to go alone. It gives me a chance to push myself harder than if I’m with someone. I found a route a while back that has a pretty steep climb, and because of that I cross paths with far fewer people. It’s freeing.
And a short while later, out of breath and soaked in sweat – no matter how hot or cold the day – I stand on my rock at the top of the summit and look over the valley.
I’ve reached my happy place.
There are a lot of mountain tops, many that I’m sure are far more breathtaking than my happy place. But pride I feel from the physical effort it takes to reach the top, and looking down on my home, there’s nothing quite like it. No matter how shitty I feel, going to my happy place makes me feel better.
For a while, I’ve felt like I’ve been losing my edge, wearing out. So yesterday morning, I visited my happy place. Regrouped. I’m getting my enthusiasm back a little at a time, but I have a way to go still. The stress isn’t about to go away – it’s only just begun. But as long as I have my happy place, I know I’ll be fine. In fact, I’ll get stronger every time.