Tag Archives: biking

Grateful And Fulfilled – Heading Home!

I am on my way home, back in the Alaska Boardroom on the last leg of my trip.  I am thrilled to be meeting CrisMarie, Sooke and Bailey tonight and sleeping in my own bed again.  The month at The Haven has once again been rich and fulfilling.  This morning as we shared our last circle together, I had a chance to look around and reflect on my connections with each of my follow travelers, forgeting about the hard parts and the moments when I wished to be home. Instead, I felt touched and honored to have witnessed transformation.

I am soon leaving again, this time to celebrate my 50th birthday with a bike trip to Croatia. I realized today, in thinking about turning 50, that I have spent over half my life involved in programs and transformation at The Haven. I believe it was a May Come Alive that launched me on my journey many, many years ago. At that time I didn’t even think I would make it to 25, much less 50!  However, here I am turning 50, and though I will be officially celebrating in June, it seems right to have had a month at The Haven to test my aliveness, remembering what turned my life around back then and what still keeps inspiring me.

It’s really pretty simple.  People.  The power of two or more human beings opening and revealing themselves to each other—the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful moments of realness that happens over and over in the Haven session rooms. I did have a few moments in the past month when I wondered why I still keep coming. I questioned my ability to be like others had been for me: a mentor, a guide, personal and authentic. I caught myself putting up some walls and disengaging. And I called myself out, challenged myself to make a choice—to risk, to have some faith and trust the process. Much like the Grinch, my heart grew in size three or four times throughout a given day.

This time around I discovered the joy in developing a longer more intimate relationship with my co-leader. We have been doing enough together now that we have a way of working together that is smooth and connected. We can laugh, cry and clear things up. We know when the other is tightening and are willing to say something and hold each accountable to the task of staying present, curious and open.

I was touched when Carole pulled out a poem I had written after an earlier Phase and wanted to use it in our closing circle. I wrote those words to go with a closing song over a year ago and when we read it again, I was very glad she had kept it alive.

Sometimes writing is the easiest way for me to freely share my heart, writing a poem about touching a raw moment, and sometimes it’s writing a blog.

I am grateful for The Haven, for each of the many lives that have touched my own over the years, and for myself for sticking with it!

From Aunt Sarah’s To McDonald’s – From Biking To Triking!

Finally, I can share more about the big project I referred to in my last post.  In putting together an iMovie for my Dad’s 90th birthday celebration, I had the great idea of soliciting my cousin, who lives across the country, into create video footage of some of my Dad’s best friends and bike riding companions. And my cousin did an amazing job.  However, that did require quite a bit more effort on my part to get all the pieces together in time. Like me, I believe my cousin is a Myers-Briggs ‘P’ and footage was arriving even past the last minute!

The party was this past weekend and the video was a success.  Actually the entire weekend was fun. I would say the best part for me was getting up early Saturday morning to join my Dad on the McDonald’s breakfast ride. Since I was five (may be younger), I remember my Dad getting us out on our bikes to ride for breakfast, though back then it was Aunt Sarah’s Pancake House. Saturday’s ride was shorter but quite wonderful. It’s awesome that my Dad still rides and has been willing to shift from his racing bike to a fancy trike, allowing him to stay riding.  I also loved getting to meet the others who were all were over seventy and equally committed to riding and building connections through biking and food.  They track the riders, the walkers, the drivers and they make all folks who make it feel welcome.

There is very little I can eat at McDonald’s but everyone else enjoyed senior meals, coffee and tea.  I think I threw most of them a curve when I ordered an Americano. I have never had so many questions asked about a drink.  The bottom line—this was a drip coffee and/or tea crowd.

My father’s life covers much more than bike riding.  I discovered a lot putting the pieces together for the video.  It was a rich journey.  Hopefully he will be able to enjoy the video beyond the party. There was a lot of footage that did not make the movie but I know both my Mom and Dad will enjoy watching. 

We had a great weekend. Between biking for breakfast, throwing a party for seventy or so friends and finally gathering as a family to play games and eat pizza, I left grateful for the Clarke clan and look forward to the century celebration in another decade! Though this time, I will be counting on a call from the President (I have been told he/she calls all centurians) instead of making another movie.

Keep on triking Dad!!!