Effigy Mounds National Monument is a fascinating and sacred place along the Upper Mississippi in a beautifully rugged region of northeast Iowa. The earthen mounds protected here by the National Park Service were built by prehistoric American Indian people between 800 and 1200 years ago. Some of the mounds are burial sites, while others are believed to be ceremonial, but many mysteries remain.
It was my very good fortune to be at the park just before sunrise one morning, surrounded by a fog so dense that, at first, shapes 20 feet away were barely discernible. To me, the ghostly grey fog was a perfect visual representation of the ancient secrets preserved here. As I walked the trails through the forest, the silence was so profound that it seemed to still my thoughts and allow a sort of wordless awareness to be present.
This photo comes to mind this morning as I think about the way complex decisions sort themselves out. It seems to be a necessary part of the process to walk for a while on a path you can barely see where surroundings seem shrouded in sameness. It makes no difference if you would like to have something different, like sparkly warm sunlight on shiny green leaves, what you have is fog. When we let go of our notion of how things should be, we can appreciate how they are. That bit of surrender often creates a space for clarity.
When my recent Kickstarter campaign ended successfully, thanks to many of you, my next step was to sort through a myriad of options, searching for the right path and the right experts to help with the next phase of bringing “Surrendering to Serendipity” into a completed, beautiful book. There came a point where I had accumulated lots of information about the choices and although I wanted a decision to be clear, it was not yet.
Life was showing me a familiar lesson in yet another new context. Resisting the reality of the way things are in this moment is about as productive as whacking one’s head against the wall. The fact is that in this moment I don’t know. My job is to simply be right here in the midst of don’t know, without resistance or argument. That means surrendering to the moment as it is. It means being still and waiting. Fog is never permanent.
And…sure enough! Out of that surrender, clarity arises. The next morning, every shape is distinct, every cornstalk stands in stark contrast to the one beside it and the way is undeniably shown – and it is full speed ahead.
Now, I’m happy to say that all the moving parts of this project seem to be on target and on time. I’ve got the wise counsel of a “coach” who has been in the book publishing industry for more than two decades and who really gets what “Surrendering to Serendipity” is about. Life is fast-paced, challenging, exciting and great fun and I am loving this part of this project as much as I have every other.
Part of the pure joy of my work is having you with me. On an almost daily basis, someone gives me the gift of saying, “I cannot wait to have this book!” I cannot tell you how that inspires me – and I also cannot wait for you to have this book!
Stay warm and safe and I’ll be back in touch soon!