Did My World Just Get Smaller?

Our power just got restored yesterday after 36 hours of being knocked out by a tornado on Sunday. Totally unexpected, it took our rural little neighborhood by complete surprise. Never happens. Not here. Not in a Federal Forest area near a small inland lake. Well it happened and here we all are. Some were impacted more than others. Trees on houses, trees on cars... trees everywhere. That's what we're known for up here. Trees, lots and lots of trees.

All summer long I'm just waiting for fall

What does this have to do with m.s.? It has to do with my world as I know it or used to know it until last Sunday and how the tiny little campground just a quarter-mile away from us helped me cope mentally, physically, and emotionally. In fact all summer long I can't wait for fall to come. Cooler temperatures, crisp color-changing leaves leaving their trail on the campground road after the rangers have put it to bed for the season. Locking the gates, forbidding any more solitude seekers, boaters, bikers or nature watchers from entering her welcome embrace.

I loved that time the most. After her gates were locked. I would take Emma Jean, our little maltese/shih tzu mix down and park the car nearby. Although only a quarter-mile away, sometimes it can be awfully difficult to go that far, so I'll opt to drive instead.

Where I can walk without people staring

From there a mere walk around or duck under the gate which was permissable by the way, and you are automatically transported to another universe. The air feels cleaner, the colors vivid, the breeze off the lake a healing balm. But all the time I'm walking, actually walking freely, no cars, no people to stare and maybe wondering why I walk the way I do....you know that stare, you know the wondering that goes unasked.

My safe place

None of that goes on in this little campground after it's closed. It's my safe place. It's my sanctuary. It's a place where m.s. is unwelcome, not allowed and for the brief time that I'm almost allowed to forget, I find healing. I find comfort. I find a unique type of wholeness for my emotions. I believe if a campground with it's 22 camping spots, 2 little outhouses, old wooden picnic tables and fire pits could have arms, then it has most assuredly wrapped them around me in an embrace as if that of an old treasured friend that has welcomed me back and has found comfort itself. Comfort that the long, hectic, hot noise of summer is over and that now it too, can find healing.

Now permanently closed

The friendly old cedars and hardwoods in the campground were destroyed. Especially by the lakeshore. Totally knocked down and uprooted in what could only be seen as the unfairest of fights. The campground is now permanently closed.

I have a hut in the wood, none knows it but my Lord... Irish tenth century

Never give up

Sometimes it's a mystery this life we live. It is natural to hold dear to what we love and yet what we love can be so easily taken for granted. Hold dear to those you love today and what you do have and what you can do. No matter if it doesn't seem like that much to you now, hold it close and keep going, keep trying, and never stop loving. Never give up.

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