Day 1,002 – Thankful for a Walk with My Dad that I’ll Never Forget

One of the benefits of doing this blog daily and then sharing it is the memoires that re-appear each year.  Today was a perfect example of this.  My post from a year ago reminded me of a wonderful act of kindness from a friend.  The post from two years ago brought a peace and calm that I’ll hope to convey through the next few paragraphs.

To properly set the stage I need to start from the start of the day.  My alarm went off and I laid in bed looking up at absolutely nothing in the dark in the direction of the ceiling.  I considered going back to sleep but opted for movement (quick side note – funny how many times something really cool happens when I talk myself into getting out of bed instead of sleeping in…  maybe I should do that more often!).  Once dressed I headed out for a run and as soon as I stepped outside my senses were filled with one of my favorite scents, freshly dug topsoil (I know, it’s weird, but trust me, there’s something magical about it for me).  I paused and took a big breath in through my nose and immediately felt a light breath of wind across my face.  Before the small gust had finished washing across my face I was thinking of my dad.

A couple of years ago today we were on a family vacation in Olympic National Park – exactly two weeks after he’d passed away.  Throughout the day I caught myself talking with him in my head when I had moments alone in the woods.  At one point on a hike that day I spoke to him out loud and said that I loved him and missed him.  Right after I said that a light gust of wind brushed across my face.  I almost froze in mid-step as I was in a densely wooded expanse of northwest rainforest that allowed very little air movement.  I can’t explain the feel in any way other than I could just feel in the core of my being that Dad was saying that he loved me too.  That moment is forever frozen in my brain.

Later in the day we went on a hike through one of the most serenely beautiful forests I’ve ever experienced, the Ancient Groves.  The trees were over 750 years old and had grown in peace for literally centuries.  My dad would have loved that place!  As we hiked through Becky followed her intuition and took the boys ahead of the trail without me a little bit and I lagged behind.  For a short while I felt the presence of Dad walking along with me.  I never actually said anything, I just walked with him and soaked in the beauty around us.  It was quite possibly the most peaceful and fulfilling walk I’d ever been on with him, or with him but without him as it was.  Memories of talking with him about his similar walk in the woods after his dad passed away slipped into my memory.  That was one that I’ll never forget.

This morning between the smell and wind and the general temperature I had such clear memories of that walk in Olympic.  As I ran I thought of Dad often, especially when I had this incredible sight in front of me as I turned a corner…


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