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Making Life an Adventure that Inspires us...

Shouldn't life be an adventure that inspires us? That let's us wake up feeling like joy and that spark for life are, not just possible, but probable? And why is that as adults so many of us lose that spark? Instead of an adventure, like becomes about how best to play it safe.


Why is that? And can we turn the tide around? Can life become more about fun and adventure, then merely keeping our heads above water? Read on to find out more.


 

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“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty & well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, & loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!”

― Hunter S. Thompson


Lately, I’ve been thinking about dogs, life and adventure... And particularly, of my dog, Aloha Breeze, a 2 year old fawn and blue tiger-striped Staffy. Bree for short. I’d stare at her puppy pic at 6 weeks old, imagining how she’d fit in perfectly to our family, like a gentle, warm, wind breezing into our lives. When she finally got here, Bree it seemed, had different plans. Less island breeze, and more hurricane status. Bree is fleet-footed and fast, with the trouble-finding capacity and smarts of a two year old hyped up on red bull. She is a chaos agent of fun and energy uprooting our carefully planned life minute by minute. And of course, we all fell madly in love with her. She’s more than a dog, she’s family now. She’s also my fourth dog as an adult. I lost two before her suddenly, and tragically. Freak accidents. Unlucky.

So you can imagine how I feel about Bree and keeping her safe. Bree’s probably had more panicky, paranoid trips to the vet than all three of my other dogs combined.

She’s also had a lot more training, and walks and toys than the other dogs, but also a lot less freedom.

When I mentioned at dinner that I’d read in a book that dogs should run for at least an hour a day off leash in order to not be neurotic, someone in my family looked across the table at me and wistfully said he wished he could see Bree run off leash, flying across a huge field, finally free and happy. I winced. No thank you. Too dangerous. Didn’t they know what could happen?


College of Bree sleeping, hiding under the covers, out in the field, & playing ball

But that night, as I looked at Bree sleeping soundly, I couldn’t help but wonder:

How happy was Bree? She was safe, sure. And well-taken care of, but what if there was something missing in my attempt to keep her with us for as long as possible?

So one day last week I let her run around on a huge 26 foot line of leash in the middle of a hillside of brush and sage. And Bree lit up.

She was practically vibrating with joy as she sniffed low to the ground running, bounding over brush to chase a rabbit, and even flushing a flock of sparrows from their hiding spot, and watching them fly off with great delight.

Our tiny adventure wasn’t without danger or perils.

There was a highway next to our wilderness area with cars zooming by, a cliff, various wild animals we could have encountered, and some rusty barbed wire we narrowly avoided. Not to mention a thorn in the paw at one point.

But it was worth it. Anyone who saw her face and her joy would have come to the same conclusion.

Sometimes, I think as women we end up with the idea that it’s our job to show up to heaven’s gate with our hearts and faces completely intact.


Looking like we never took the wrapper off our lives — wrinkle free, taut, smooth skin still on our faces, and with hearts beating in our chests that have never been broken.


Sometimes I think we get the idea that our job is keep ourselves and everyone else in our lives as safe as possible — often by keeping life and it’s inherent dangers as far at bay as possible.

By bubbling wrapping ourselves & our loved ones. So life can never touch us.


But the purpose of life is to let it change us.

To let it touch us and our lives.


To let it give us the wrinkles and laugh lines around the eyes, a little weathering on the skin, that shows of a life well-lived, well-loved.

To let it give us the scars that show we had grand adventures, whether that’s the faint one above our eyebrow from the time we tried to swing all the way around the bar, to the deep scar running across our abdomen from the big adventure of child birth.

To show up with our hearts broken (and hopefully healed) — mended in odd places because we loved.

And love will do that to you. Love is always a risk.

But it’s worth it.

Love of all kinds will send you bounding over bushes, and landing into barbed wire fences. It will have you flying high, and sometimes falling with a thud.

Whether that’s love of another, or a new passion in life that sends you out on a new adventure, sniffing wildly through sagebrush, vibrating with joy and excitement, unsure what will happen next.


We often seem to think that staying safe, and keeping life and it’s dangers at bay means more life for us, -- more time, more years.

But often it does just the opposite.


We may perhaps, be granted more years, but infinitely less life — less joy, less love, less connection, and far less adventures.

And a life without those things is hardly a life at all.

So this week, I hope you take a risk and let more life and love in.

I hope you trade in a few of your foolish attempts at arriving to your final destination safely, and unscathed.

And instead, I hope you decide to a risk that delights you in a way that leaves you vibrating with happiness.


And so does Bree!

All my love,


Desiree Sommer

PS you can read more about the true story of Luke (not his real name) and his school the Roanoke Avenue Elementary school in the book “Stolen Focus” by Johann Hari. Great book, highly recommend.


 

Desirée Sommer is a former Interior Designer & Writer dedicated to helping those around her to Beautify, Style & make their lives Fun again! She happily resides in the rural beauty of Idaho with her pet pooch Bree, where she gets to take epic hikes, and plot her next big travel escapade. Her favorite things include traveling, fil eam & anything French or Italian. Oh, and dancing! Always dancing!




 

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