Thursday, March 01, 2007
All things were packed into the car and off we went. Of course, there is always one thing forgotten and this trip was no exception. The infamous green bucket of cooking utensils, headlamp, and camp soap was left behind. Alas, the best laid plans....
Since it was the last weekend in February, the trees were not yet green with foliage. However, there was the cutest of light green "fluff" to them as they were just beginning to sprout forth new leaves. Everything had the appearance of fuzz. As night fell, the stark, leave-less trees silently stated one word to me: patience.
Simple because they were waiting.
I liked the stark contrast of naked branches against the waning sunlight. We saw birds galore and we still have several to identify.
The Saturday dust/wind storm was something else. The morning began with, "Wow, it is all hazy outside." Walking throughout the day proved to have grit attached to it but you didn't notice until you got back to camp because you were so distracted with trying not to take flight in the high winds. When we did get back to camp, several tree branches had landed very near the tent. We decided that since Mother Nature had provided firewood in such an obvious fashion, gathering and burning it all would be just fine. We had a grand fire.
Purtis Creek is a small camp ground but we had practically the whole camp ground to ourselves. We camped in spot #60, on the other side of the dam and there was not a soul around us. Perfect.
We have another trip scheduled for Dinosaur Valley. Who's in??
The first day has come and gone, and really it was not that bad. Granted, I have not been to Terrell yet, that is next week, but so far, it’s ok. We sat in on group therapy today. This entails the patients all coming together to discuss what they are feeling, fears and other thoughts. The vast majority of people were there because of severe depression and/or having attempted suicide.
The real theme I heard in this group of sad, depressed people was a lack of connection to other human beings. “I am just so lonely since my husband died,” or “I just feel the loneliness come over me,” were both common statements.
What I heard from these people is this: they don’t feel like people care about them. What’s more, they don’t know how to go about changing that feeling. Many of the people there had been abused or taken advantage of in terrible ways. Honestly, I could relate on some level to how some of the patients were feeling.
Why is it that we can be so mean to each other? Are our lives so busy that we forget to care about our friends or about our families? The therapist said something sadly very funny: “Yeah, any major family holiday can make anyone want to starting using [drugs/alcohol] again.”
So very sad, and yet so very true.
I think the part I have the hardest time with is the simple fact I identify with some of these people. I know how they are feeling and what they are going through because I have walked their path.
Of course, it begs the question, why am I not also in their shoes? Why am I not also sitting here on the other side of the table? Why is it that I have not been on that other side of the table at least once before?
To me, there is only one obvious answer to that: Friends
A gift I seem to have in abundance.
Ya’ll, I am thankful for every one of you.
Yes, you too…