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Every day, I walk. I wake up early and watch the sky become light. Most days I bundle up in warm clothes, always wishing for warmer weather, yet accepting whatever temperature the day has awoken with. As I accept the weather outside, I accept whatever temperature is inside me.

As I walk on quiet streets, I see. I see birds hoping about on the ground, or up in the sky, wings catching wind; soaring. I see turkeys, feathers spread wide in beauty as they court the females around them. I’ve come across deer grazing, and sometimes, if I am really lucky a beaver swimming the perimeter of his domain. I see all this and more, as the day awakes, as I awake, I see.

I hear. I hear the sing song of birds. I hear the wind; soft at times and harsh at other times. I hear the motors of cars and trucks, passing me by. I hear the scurrying of squirrels and chipmunks and whatever other critters are moving away from me. I hear the cries of warnings from animals as I come close to. I hear the jiggling of dog collars. I hear my voice at times, as I repeat a mantra out loud, bringing me to focus on the presence. As I hear, I awaken.  

I feel. I feel the sun on my skin on sunny days. I feel the wind, as it moves cold air about me, awakening me further. I feel the ground under my feet. I feel my legs, as they wake with the first hill. I feel my breath, as it expands my lungs, cold air filling me. I feel my thoughts, my dreams, my fears, my to-dos, my emotions as they pass through my mind. As I walk, I feel, one step at a time, I wake.

I connect. I connect with nature around me, surrendering to all its beauty in all its various forms. I smile, I wave, I greet others as we pass each other in our morning moments. Strangers moving along the same paths. I connect as I walk, not knowing the ripples of my smile on others, yet connecting with the joy of having smiled. As I walk, I am awakened, and I connect.

I walk with the intention of being. I walk with intention of seeing. I walk with the intention of grounding, of feeling, and to hear, to hear my heartbeat and the earths too. I walk to welcome each day, in whatever way I awake, in whatever way the world awakes; I accept. I walk, finding inner peace, solace, and space that fills my cup and allows me to help fill others. I walk because in the act of doing so I awaken my connection to myself. I walk and with each step I love my body, my mind, and connect more with my soul. I walk.

-Anonymous, New Hampshire

Being marvelous and being brave means you’re willing to believe in the wonder of who you are and take the risks you need to take to Bloom Breathe BE Be authentically YOU Break the mold Expand Evolve Flourish Grow Heal Fail Learn Live Thrive Transform Triumph Trust Succeed .