“Life is not measured…”

We’re going on another wilderness adventure, so technology will stay at home, except for my cell phone for taking a million photos. 🙂 I’m leaving you with one of my favorite Maya Angelou quotes, and this photo was taken at Crater Lake in Oregon.

Wishing you all a fabulous week and I’ll see you when I return. I’ll also add a Big Thank You for all your visits and support!

Stay safe and Be happy,
Lauren Scott
© ❤️

The Fine Points

Since the beginning of you and I,
we have bought thirty-three calendars.
I know you like your coffee beige
and that cereal is your feast on 
weekday mornings, but on weekends,
you’ll skillfully whip up an omelet.
I’ve never mastered the egg flip.
I know which of your shirts have hung 
around for the long haul and if you could
backpack every day, you would. If you
had a choice: flip flops or hiking boots,
the boots would win by a broad margin.
I know our children have the best dad.
You think you’re lucky finding me,
but I am the lucky one…
to wake up each morning with your
pillow beside mine, to witness the sun’s
first peek through the window, to vie
for blankets on a January night.
We are ears and rocks for each other,
having mastered the flavors and textures, 
while learning each other’s landscape.
But the depth of our devotion 
has not reached its full potential. 
There is more closeness to discover 
in spaces yet to be revealed.
I feel like a grand prize winner
in this thing called life 
where do-overs aren’t magically offered.
You and I became an Us, 
and as more lines come into light, 
as more grays persist, 
even if feet shuffle and bones ache, 
there will be more calendars to hang. 

Lauren Scott ©

This poem is one of four that I contributed
to the anthology, Poetry Treasures 2: Relationships.
A beautiful collection of poetry
where twelve poets reveal their
most personal moments,
compiled by Kaye Lynne Booth
and Robbie Cheadle.

To purchase your copy, here is the link: https://books2read.com/u/3kP8aK.
Also available in paperback on Amazon: https://tinyurl.com/mry57jdu.

Thank you for stopping by,
Lauren Scott ❤️

A Text in Seconds

My thoughts on Sunday, April 25th, 2021…

Dear Mom, I know you’re listening from above, so I need you to know that I’m sorry for moving in and out of the house so many times, for putting you through that emotional turmoil. Although, I couldn’t have known back then what you were feeling, but I understand now. I realize how much your heart ached. The emptiness, the thought of your youngest leaving the nest. The strong wish to protect and keep me safe. I’m walking in those shoes now, dealing with the discomfort, and honestly, it’s not a trip to Disneyland. But I know in time, the discomfort will lessen. I don’t think it will ever disappear for good, but I know I’ll feel more at peace as the calendar pages flip.

Those were the days when my parent’s door was revolving – when I strived to find my way into the vast world outside of their home. Today, our youngest, our son, left home for the first time. Not for college, not for his internship, but for a taste of independence. The caveat is that his apartment is across the country. He’ll live closer to our daughter and son-in-law who also live on the east coast. And while this fact brings joy, I still wish their paths could have been paved on the west. Maybe someday. Or maybe, we’ll uproot and head east. The future remains a giant neon question mark.

The weekend prior to his leaving was spent with the three of us, my husband, him, and I celebrating this new adventure, as well as ours as empty nesters. Great food and wine, nostalgic conversation that at times provoked tears. Then today came. We knew it was inevitable. The day that he would begin his drive across country alone. Fortunately, his first day of driving would only be four hours, so he didn’t have to leave early in the morning. This gave him time to relax, to take one more look around the house and make sure he packed everything he needed, and to walk our dog with me one last time. He has never liked being in photos, but since this occasion rings differently in that he’s moving away, he conceded to selfies of the both of us once we reached the top of the hill, along with photos of him and his lab.

Then just as he was about to start his car for the first leg of his journey, we took selfies of the three of us: mom, dad, son. Smiles, funny expressions, all concealing the tears of what was about to come, the hugs and the “see you later.” Talk about emotions! But we got through it, and then we watched him back out of the driveway and wave to us as he rolled down the street, embarking on this exciting journey. My husband and I let the tears flow in the drama of the moment.

The pros of technology come in handy when our son can send a text in seconds, telling us that he arrived safely. Those few words including “love you all” with a heart emoji allows us to breathe again. That was his first drive. Day One. He’ll have six days of driving across country where the seventh will be the day he is handed his new apartment keys. A moment of joy, celebration, adult independence, but also nostalgia, knowing he’ll miss us, his dog, and his childhood home. It was tough for our Labrador because his doggie brain doesn’t understand the words his brother says to him. Giving those last hugs to his chocolate lab tugged at the heart. If only our beloved pets could speak our language. During the day, our lovable lab meandered into our son’s room. I have no doubt, he not only sensed his brother’s absence, but he sensed something had changed today. As smart as our furry family member can be, I’m sure he felt the profoundness of it all.

The quiet in the house is LOUD, but we know with time, the volume will soften into a sense of normalcy. Walking into his bedroom, the bare walls and empty shelves incite a wave of emotions that hit me like a tsunami. As we anticipated the day he would leave, we selfishly begged for time to slow down. Now, moving through the week to day 5, he is on his way to visit his sister and brother-in-law. We are thrilled that our kids will get a chance to visit. But we also wish for time to speed up, for him to safely arrive at his new home, the final stop on the road trip.

Two more days to go. I have never felt such an affinity for my cell phone before as I wait for his text messages to ping each evening. The tears flow less frequently now that he is over the hump of the week, but they’re still very much present, finding their freedom every now and then. They fall out of joy, from missing him, and from unleashing the tenacious worry. I feel as if I’m holding my breath while he continues to blaze through the many state lines. I’ll be able to exhale once he arrives and embraces those keys in his hand.

On the opposite side of the emotional spectrum, we are so proud of him, so excited for him to walk through the door of this new chapter. It’s what we’ve always wanted but knowing the moment of him leaving home would render tears and emptiness, too.

Eventually, my husband and I will embrace this empty nest for the precious gift it is to us now as a couple, and for what it means regarding our children – a gift from them as they are able to live life to the fullest in their adult years. We will find our new rhythm through the new empty nest chapter in our family story. And we couldn’t be more excited to make memories in their new homes. Let the journey continue!

I posted about this soon after he moved out, but It’s been over a year now. He’s settled into his new life and so have we. Between flights, phone calls, and texts, we stay connected. Yes, we miss him as much as we miss our daughter, but the silver lining is that they’re living their lives, spreading their wings, the natural progression of life. We couldn’t be prouder.

Lauren Scott © ❤️
If you can relate to this scene,
the “see you later”, the emotions,
and new life chapter,
I’d love to hear about it.

Just a Raindrop

Do you ever wonder
who else is out there?
Living, breathing, existing.
Who’s to assume

we’re alone here
on our planet with stars

millions of miles away
shimmering in the night?
Maybe some being

ponders the same question,
wondering if it is simply

a tiny atom or molecule
floating in the larger picture.
Maybe we’re just a raindrop

in someone else’s universe.

Lauren Scott ©
Photo: Pixabay

We Reflect to a Deeper Layer

We are graced with their presence, beauty colors
our universe like an endless ceiling of bright blue sky.
Then one morning we wake with heavy hearts,
realizing they have gone, as though sneaking out
in the middle of the night without a word, their
existence seemingly nonexistent. Iron-gray clouds
move through that lovely cloudless sky like a brush
stroke of lingering gloom. We suspect the sun has
an attitude, refusing to rise. And each new day
magnifies the question: Did words accidentally
slip from our tongue landing like poison? Then we
reflect to a deeper layer, flipping a switch because
maybe it’s not us. Maybe it’s them. A surmising…
to soothe the bruises on our hearts.

Lauren Scott ©

Tender Reminiscence

Remember in our younger years
how you’d touch your lips to mine
while standing on the step
when we cold-shouldered time?
No letting-go desire of the
embrace that held us near
No care in the world was matched
in that moment that we shared
Who knew those doorstep kisses
would carry us this distance?
(floating in a state-of-mind
of tender reminiscence)

Lauren Scott (c) ❤️
Do you have memories
of doorstep kisses?

One boot in front of the other…

Some say backpacking is magical, and I’m one of those people. Backpacking for my husband has been his life’s passion, but I only expressed an interest five years ago when I was fifty-six. To this day, my interest in slipping a pack on my back and hitting the trail has not waned. Trees flanking the trails, butterflies floating from bloom to bloom, dragonflies buzzing above the shimmering water, the breeze bringing relief like a refreshing swim in the lake, and the morning light stretching over the horizon remind us that another glorious day has arrived – they’re all magic.

It is humble to carry essentials on my back. I’m not like Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild who hiked the Pacific Crest Trail in three months. I don’t own that level of bandwidth to wear the boots of a thru-hiker, whether on the PCT or on the Appalachian Trail. Nor do I have the desire to attempt a 60-mile trip like my husband has completed on several occasions. I’m a middle-aged woman who possesses a yearning to challenge myself in body, mind, and soul – to step out of my comfort zone and seek adventures to be experienced, even though I need to shed a few pounds.

I get tired at times my legs begin to tremble. I have literally met exhaustion face to face on a few of our hikes. And when I get hot, my face turns pomegranate red, a little embarrassing when greeting other hikers. Sweat trickles and forms in patches on my body that, yes, I’ll refrain from naming. And unfortunately, no shower stands behind the tent waiting to be utilized. And yet, I am pulled into the magic…

I’ve known several friends who didn’t get the chance to celebrate their fiftieth birthday. We all know tomorrow is not guaranteed. I always try to live my life to its fullest, but now even more so as I grow older. Maybe because I’m inching my way closer to the top of the ladder! So, I choose to explore this type of adventure that never appealed to me when I was younger. To live my life in the richest way possible.

I’m not a solo backpacker, but I admire those who are, especially women portraying strength, perseverance, and determination by setting out on their own. I find comfort in the security of going with my husband, knowing he holds the experience and knowledge of the trail. I do help pitch the tent and set up and clean up camp, so I don’t just sit around sipping wine while he does all the work. We make a good team. He’s also the one who calms me in the middle of the night when the snap of a twig causes my eyes to fly open. What was that? A bear? A human? The imagination can truly run wild! But I acknowledge this trait and try to allow his calm composure to flow into me.

As to my body, there are moments when my knees twinge or my hips groan from sleeping on nothing but a pad separating me from the ground! And the sleeping bag manages to twist me up at times, too. All magic. Every lens to the surrounding beauty, every chirp or snap, even each little ache or unexpected precipitation literally raining on our parade falls into the package of a life-changing alchemy. The welcome peace from the hustle and bustle of daily routines. The whispers of wind through the trees attempting to touch the vast sky. The breeze ruffling my bangs looking a bit wonky after taking off my hat. Getting outdoors, inhaling the fresh air, time to reflect. As I said before…magic for the mind, body, and soul.

So, given our bodies remain capable, my husband and I will continue on the backpacking trail one boot in front of the other, relishing the magic of it all.

Lauren Scott (c) ❤️

Shifting of Seasons

I’ll be off grid next week, adventuring with hubby and backpack in the wilderness. So, have a great week ahead and I leave you with this bright beauty and the moods of seasons…

Autumn admired the brilliant blue sky
Winter wiggled out of my sneakers
Spring tapped me on the shoulder
Summer’s hello, sweet as apple pie!

Lauren Scott (c) ❤️