Tuesday was a day. And I don’t mean just any old day, it was a day, y’all. It put me through the ringer. People I love are going through changes, going through pain, and there is nothing I can do about it. So, I listened and asked questions and comforted and cried and hugged, and when I was alone, I got angry and sad and mad and worried and scared. And then, as is often my way, I retreated to my cave. To my house tucked up in the trees, with no real urge to come down again.
And then, the moon.
The full moon was just too spectacular to resist. I wanted to get as close to it as possible. I needed to get as close to it as possible. So, with my 8-year old in tow, we drove up to the Seminary in our little town. The beautiful campus sits high upon a hill, with a clear, gorgeous view to the east, where the moon was rising just above the trees.
As we wound up the road and climbed the stairs to the top, we found the moon and then, something else altogether: we found the Seminary Labyrinth. I’ve wanted to explore it since we moved here two years ago, and there it was, gleaming in the moonlight. My son asked me what a labyrinth was, and I answered, “It’s like a maze. You walk though it and you meditate and pray. It’s a time to be quiet and contemplative. It’s a time to listen to the voice inside you and to trust that you’ll find your way.” So, off he went, pacing his way though, as I took pictures of him, of the Seminary, and of that moon.
“Come try it, Mommy!”
So, I did. As I wound around and around the beautiful shape, following each carefully laid path and turn, I realized a labyrinth is not a maze at all. You never hit a dead end or an obstacle you can’t find a way around. The paths may wind and double back and u-turn, but you never go backwards, you’re always moving toward the center. You may not be able to see from where you are how you’ll ever find the center, but you always get there. If you just let go and follow the path. One faithful step at a time.
And that’s when it hit me. Life is not a maze. Life is a labyrinth. We are never given more than we can take. A dead-end isn’t a dead-end, it’s just a hairpin turn, with little vision of the road ahead or behind. And even when you feel the most lost, you’re still moving forward. Toward the center. Toward open space and, ultimately, freedom from life’s twists and turns.
I kept walking the paths. Over and over again. And in time, everything was back in perspective.
We can’t control the curves that life throws us or the ones we love. But we can keep going. And we can have hope that if we do keep going (and have a little faith), all will be revealed in time.
As for the pull of that moon? Well, my advice is that if the moon is calling you somewhere, you should go. Immediately, if not sooner. And if you have an eight year-old as your spirit guide, even better.