January 27, 2012


The other day, I was walking along, and my gait was different. It felt odd at first. A little bouncy I dare say. I surmised my shoes were doing something funny to the way I was walking. I tried to change my steps so the bouncing would stop. It didn't help. And, then I thought to myself, "Is this what it feels like to have pep in your step?"

By golly! I've gone all peppy and stuff!!

Hold up!! Before you go rolling your eyes and muttering about what a windbag I am, hear me out.

My mother told me when we boarded that airplane bound for Costa Rica that "this place will change you." And, like you, I brushed it off.

She warned there was something, not exactly sure what, but something about the community, the air, the rain forest, the animals, that seeps into your soul and mixes it up a bit. For every person, the effect is slightly different. For most, it's downright cathartic.

I lost myself in the jungle and purged my soul.

However, I didn't really realize the full extent of Costa Rica's grasp until I was back in my hometown, back to doing all the normal, routine things I had done before. Back to doing laundry, organizing play dates, filling the dishwasher and schlepping kids to and fro. In fact, it was an early morning eye appointment with Miss Divine one week later when the realization started to sprout. The eye doctor was going on about vision prescriptions, patching weak eyes and listing off way too many numbers when she stopped what she was saying mid sentence, gave her full attention my way and asked what was different about me. Without skipping a beat, Miss Divine blurted "She cut her hair and just got back from Costa Rica!" My eight year old's blunt perception of my new psyche was more or less hushed because how perceptive can an eight year old be after all.

Skip ahead a few days, as I tried to time my stride to a rhythm that wasn't so bouncy, when it hit me. Pow! My aha! moment (as Oprah would say). Miss Divine was right! My eight year old, in her funny little eight year old way, actually nailed it. It wasn't my physical appearance that was so different, it was my inner self that was shining through. All those things that weighed me down before visiting the most magical place on earth, had disappeared and is no longer really all that important. And, dang, don't I feel good about it!


Jaimie said...

Oh my goodness!! What an absolutely glorious time!!! So glad you went and had such an ah ha time!! :o)

leavesandlizards said...

Wow, Erin. I am touched, your story brings a tears to my eyes. Costa Rica is a magical place, it is unexplainable until you allow yourself to be open and accept the peaceful energy...and it stays with you. That's why we're here.

Pat said...

Erin, that is a touching story. Thank you for sharing it with everyone. What a gift.