We are all expressions of the patterns we see in the natural world, but we are so far removed from our natural environment that we completely ignore the signs. We have millions of years of reference materials and remedies for what ails us and we fly over them, drive past them, and rarely get to experience the wisdom and healing that the land provides.
Over time, erosion molds and shapes the land.
Over time, erosion molds and shapes our character. Our experiences. How we show up in the world.
If we come into this world as a whole being, fear and trauma and love and grief cut into our surface, into our insides, creating our marks and scars and experiences that make us who we are, our unique expression of the human experience.
Trauma feels like erosion.
Fear does too.
So does love.
So does anger.
So does grief.
The periods of heavy rainfall that cause this erosion near Anza Borrego don’t last for long. Neither do the emotions listed above. They come and go. Some may be a dull buzz in the background; a nagging fear that you’re not good enough, that wall of tears stuck behind your throat that makes it hard to breathe, the warmth of the love you hold in your heart for your significant other, child, or pet. But for the most part, they come, they do their business in the natural order of things, and the world keeps spinning.
For five million years, this land has been shaped by periods of rainfall. For 33 years, so have I, both in the literal rainfall sense and also the rain that falls from my face. I’m a blink. A speck. A tiny organism on a beautiful planet in an expansive solar system in one of what, 100 billion galaxies currently understood by the technology available to us for observation? What ailed me yesterday might carry over to today, but it doesn’t have to DEFINE today.
This canyon in these badlands doesn’t experience itself as damaged or incomplete. It is what it is until it isn’t. Until it changes. Until a wall gives way under the weight of itself. Until another rain comes.
I don’t know about you, but every time I get outside, I find a piece of myself I didn’t even know I was missing.
For that, I am thankful.
📸 Barry Williams