walking wednesdays: winter hikes in boulder

My dad is one of the kindest, soft-spoken, and gentle souls I’ve ever known. He’s been sick for many years, but in the past 6 months his condition has deteriorated and hospital rooms have become a big part of his life. There’s been rehab too, which provides only a bit of laughter as my brother and I joke that it’s not the kind of rehab Lindsay Lohan goes in-and-out of but the other kind…
My mother bares the brunt of the stress these days, for she is with him day in and day out. She advocates for him, feeds him, challenges doctors when they need to be challenged, and has put her life on hold in order to tend to his needs. My brother and I both left New York so my mother is the go-to-person. And while she has an incredibly tight-knit community and a large circle of friends, I can't stop worrying about them both. This has been the most difficult part of living in Colorado. I'm not there. 

I don't usually talk about how challenging this time period has been for everyone, or how depressing it can be to have a parent who is very, very ill. That's mostly because there isn't a lot that anyone can say or do to alleviate the pain, the frustration, or the anger.  But I do rely on a small group of friends and I'm thankful to have a loving husband and a wonderful family. I've also discovered a place I can go that gives me peace and a bit of calm

The mountains, being out in nature. It makes me feel like there is a bigger plan in play and that life is wonderful and beautiful even when there is sadness, stress and heartache. And for that I am grateful. I am hopeful that things will get easier and my father's health will improve. In the meantime I will focus on all the truly important things that matter in life and let the rest fall by the wayside...

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. 
Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. 
The winds will blow their own freshness into you, 
and the storms their energy, 
while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.
                                                                                                                          - John Muir