God is a better writer than me. The best fiction plot my imagination has come up with pales in comparison to his. Some of the twists and turns in my personal story are helping me to realize that change is the only constant in life.
Fortunately God gives us tenacity and courage with which to meet each and every challenge of our journey. He also helps his heroes and heroines develop persistence and humility as they stumble repeatedly while striving to reach their goals and dreams along the way.
Unexpected plot twists are what led my amazing husband and I up to, and through the California years of our marriage. Hopefully a lot of personal growth is what we have found on the other side. No better place to put all this in perspective than sitting (almost literally) on a mountaintop.
These past six months we have been living in paradise. Other than a roaring ocean in a tropical location, no where could be more inspiring than Central Oregon. I will miss the amazing drive from our mountain house to, well, anywhere. I have to admit I have enjoyed the time to think, while passing pastures speckled with alpacas, majestic bulls, and lately… half a dozen calves among the free-range cattle.
Daylight hours find the wide variety of domestic animals grazing lazily against a backdrop of snow-covered peaks that jut up into an endless blue sky. The smell of sagebrush and juniper entices an always open window in my jeep. Hawks, eagles, and Canadian geese occasionally soar overhead, and take my breath away with the sheer size of their wing span.
Why did God put six months of paradise midstream in our plot?
I have no idea, but that doesn’t make me any less grateful. It has been a revered time of reflection. In fact, leaving the mountain house for any reason has not been a priority for this reclusive writer.
Except to buy groceries, hike in nearby Smith Rock State Park, visit brew pubs and experience local cuisine, I’ve rarely ventured from our cozy mountain house other than to get the mail, which granted, is a 10-minute walk past a meadow of horses and a mountain stream.
The cat and I have spent many a lazy day by the fireplace. She napped while I wrote, or just stared at the glorious mountain range and rugged evergreens outside our window wall. I did manage to convince the continuing Ed program through the local college that they needed a novel writing course, which I had a lot of fun teaching.
I also did some guest lecturing. That led to being a judge for the Writer’s Guild short story contest, which is a part of their Fall Festival here. I am coming back for the Awards Ceremony. I will also be a guest speaker for the Guild and host one of their writing workshops while here. If all goes well, I am hoping to add a book launch to the rest of the festivities.
We move to Ft. Collins, Colorado right after Memorial Day, where Dennis has taken a Director of Marketing position with Trans Aero Helicopters. It is a dream job he has been pursuing for some time, and a pleasing surprise twist in our plot-line. The down side is that we will miss our wonderful family, not to mention watching the moods of a mountain sky change dramatically by the hour.
Parting is such sweet sorrow!
I will miss the peaceful, quiet nights observing different phases of the moon and constellations that feel close enough to touch. Etched forever in my mind is a dazzling rainbow that formed on one of the few days it dared to rain. Jack’s beanstalk couldn’t have been more magical, shooting up from nowhere.
I think we are two quite evolved people (my husband and I) that will be taking on this next chapter in our lives. The mountain we live on has moved us in many ways. It has helped us put a whirlwind decade in California behind us, and allowed us to let go of all the ghosts that had landed us there to begin with.
I have not regretted a moment of our sometimes rocky path. If you take out one domino, then everything beyond that point is disconnected. Which domino would we pull? Altogether they have fallen into quite a nice pattern, despite a few rough patches. This last six months has been especially in sync for a pleasing rhythm to our lives, our marriage, and our resurfaced dreams for the future; dreams we’d all but given up on.
In the quiet nights filled with dashing stars, in the wind off the ridge every afternoon, in the varied songs of native birds amid the sage brush of the desert floor… the dominos have fallen one by one in a unhurried pace this past half a year. You can almost see them heading to that curve, where the direction and momentum will change once again.
We are ready for it.
We both still have a lot to accomplish and the timeline of our plot relentlessly reminds us to make haste. So, we will wind down our mountain one last time and ride out of Oregon… Colorado bound. Hopefully the resolution to our story will be retirement in about 10 years, right back here in paradise!
Personal blog and website: http://kathrynmattingly.com Edgy Words Unleashed
Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00EILN6YE