This is Free-Write page thirty-nine. It is Friday, Feb 8, 2013. As of yesterday, Mountain Valley Retreat is official.
This grand plan began last summer. The vision downloaded into my conscious mind on July 7, which is also my son’s birthday. Seven months later we raised the sign on the front gate announcing Mountain Valley Retreat to the world. If all goes well, in nine months Mountain Valley Retreat will be ready to entertain her first guests.
The sign is perfect in its imperfection. Like the cedar tree it began as, its lines are not geometrically straight but naturally curving. My friend, the woodcutter, and I collaborated on it. He found the sixteen foot plank and smoothed it enough for me to draw the letters on. He carved the wood away leaving the letters raised. Hidden in the grain of the wood are representations of the four elements of nature, air, water, fire and earth. The letters are painted forest green and the natural color of the cedar looks like the sky at sunset above and with the help of the artist’s hand, the lower edge is the mountain range our valley rests in.
As I took pictures of the sign being raised and walked around my property, revisiting my vision for the who-knows-how-many-hundredth time, I felt my usual feeling of gratitude for this sweet spot I live in. I also realized that the raising of the sign takes my vision to the next level. This is not just “improvements” going on behind closed doors and a big fence. I am naming my intention for all who drive down our road to see. There is a feeling of responsibility in that. I have named it out loud. Will I be like Tommy Conner’s song, “All Hat, No Cattle?”
Time will tell but it feels good right now. Signs of change are everywhere from the electrical trenches to the stacks of raw lumber. I like the feeling that I am moving forward but at a slow and steady pace. No feeling of pressure or stress to get anything done right now…it is finding its own way and my level of trust is high.
Creating anything is like birthing a baby. I am enjoying this “pregnancy” just as I did the two that resulted in my son and daughter. I am older and wiser than I was then and that makes it easier. I have no concerns about the health of this “baby” or if I will be a good “mother” to it. I am watching it develop and lending my support as best I can. It has a life of its own and I am allowing the wisdom of nature to call the shots. I am but the vessel of this creation. Forces greater than I are creating it. I respect that and every day I let go of any attachment I have to the outcome of this creation. I feel the lightness of that release even as I feel solidly grounded to the earth.
Mountain Valley Retreat has a name and a sign and two acres of amazing high mountain ground in southern California. She is tended by two loving caretakers who are in the process of naming her 70 plus live oak trees. She is already a retreat for us and our big, aging cat, Lemur and our often annoying African Gray parrot, Oscar.
When the time is right, she will offer her gentle peacefulness and natural beauty to others.