mountain photo

Have you ever had a dream so vivid you can feel the air and your heart beating while it’s happening? I have – a few times and they always end up being really important.

In September after a month of writing my story and putting decades of pain and healing on paper, I had a very vivid dream. So real that I could feel the air, the breath in my lungs and the weariness in my bones. Lately, there has been a lot of darkness – the kind that is fighting for people I love. I’ve had old friends and new ones share the hard things that are pressing in on them – and as they share, I remember this dream. Every which I way I turn – is a balance between the heavy and light. I’ve spent days recently enraged at the darkness and others reverent at the light that pulls me close.  I don’t exactly know why I needed to share this – I thought it would be just something I kept close. But, I believe there might be someone in my world who needs to take this for themselves.

This dream has stayed with me, and if you need encouragement today of days where light breaks through and freedom awaits in your own journey, I hope it breathes a bit of hope today.

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[Dream from September 2015]

Misty skies, cool air, majestic evergreens around and below – I stood right at the edge of the cliff. breathless and as though fire and weariness coursed through my veins.  “I made it”, I whispered.

Putting my hands on my knees, bent over trying to catch my breath for all the had brought me to this place. Remembering the recently departed trek up the mountain – encountering the elements and every obstacle, my own resistance to pursue the top.

Slowing my breathing, I remembered the broken girl who began the journey at the bottom of the mountain. Broken yet determined to be free – not knowing what was ahead but that it was worth the attempt. For though I may not know what freedom felt like, the hope of it was great.

As I breathed in and out, at the top of the mountain – memories crashing over me of the darkness I went through. Lonely nights, feeling lost and afraid, weary beyond myself

but also of how –

every time light would break through the night.

Beckoning me forward. Pulling me to higher places.

A slow smile spread across my face as I recalled the days of the journey where my bones felt strong, new life taking shape, courage.

Courage, dear heart, they said. I listened. I knew I could be brave. I would begin to walk strong – and as I would feel like I had gotten the hang of it, a storm would roll in.

Storms so great they would leave me feeling whiplashed – working to recover that strength I had just experienced.

So, I would sit down. Sometimes lie flat on the ground  in the cool dirt when the storms were so great. Waiting for it to pass over – protecting myself from the elements. There had been too many times I stayed on the ground longer than was necessary.

Telling myself that people get tired, and many don’t finish the journey. It’s expected – not everyone can make it all the way.

The light broke through, and I would tell my weary heart that it was time to go. Get up, Suzanna, get up.

Shakily I rise. Shake the dust and dirt from my clothes. Putting one foot in front of the other. Eyes straight ahead.

It felt as though every level of resistance met me – whether from my own fear or external elements out of of my control.

The journey took longer than it should have – but I found myself at the top. Level ground – expansive beauty ahead, below and around.

My breath evens, and I bring my focus to where I am now, at the level ground of the top.

I knew it was time. I had been afraid of heights my entire life – yet I knew I was being called to jump from this cliff. Having faith I would soar – yet my doubt screamed I wasn’t brave enough.

I took a deep breath, and another. Resolutely deciding that freedom was my only option – trusting that He would catch me as I freefalled.

Stepping back a few feet, I prepared to run. Breathe in, breathe out. Blood on fire as adrenaline ran through me.

Pulling myself back as though a spring, I began to run.

Threw my arms open and flung myself from the safety of the ground.

Absolute freedom takes hold, followed by the shakiness of fear,  yet immediately a powerful peace took over.  

Arms open, fire began to surround me. I look down as I began taking the shape of a phoenix.

New life rising from the ashes.

Free.

I was free.
It was as it was always meant to be.

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