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We often live our lives in a mundane fashion. There are so few that truly look for adventure and actually seek those experiences out.

Why is adventure so important?

It’s the adventure that allows us to take a few moments to look into our soul.

Enjoying the Sun…. Embracing the Rain

Our souls are often neglected through the business of life. We tend to run so fast that we are unable to take a few minutes to reflect and consider if the path that we are on is actually the path that we are supposed to be on. Or is the path we are on something imposed on us by our circumstances or family?

My wife and I planned to take a kayaking adventure through Paddling Michigan. (Great company and an awesome guide named Andy) We were scheduled to leave about 3pm and take about 4 – 6 hours kayaking from Miner’s beach out to Lover’s leap and then back to Miner’s beach. That plan didn’t go exactly the way we thought.

A Short Weather Delay

We were delayed for a little while at the start of the journey, the weather was unpredictable and could have moved either way very quickly. Once the storm declared its intentions we were able to launch and start on the adventure.

My oh my, what an incredible start. The wind was coming out of the south which allowed for very calm water along the shoreline of Lake Superior. The sun was peeking through the different clouds giving us the splendor of Pictured Rocks.

(For those who don’t know, Pictured Rocks is a State Forest area in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. The mineral found with the sandstone runs with the water down the side of the sandstone painting them with magnificent color. When the sun reflects off the sandstone set atop the crystal clear, intense tropical blue water, it is a sight unmatched anywhere in the US)

With the calm water we were able to sneak into the coves that were dripping the water leaking through the sandstone. The experience was breathtaking and something that is a once in a lifetime experience. We felt so fortunate to have some perfect weather and our hopes were high for an incredible sunset on the trip back, but that wasn’t to be.

We were Enjoying the Sunshine!

We had reached the halfway point of our trip, Lover’s Leap. Lover’s Leap is likely the most notable arch along Pictured Rocks. There are many legends that give the point character and charm. But the beauty and experience of paddling under this magnificent arch is an experience that and only be felt in person. It was at this point that the Coast Guard issued a weather warning and that all water craft needed to get off the water. You can always tell the guides that are worth their weight in salt by the way they act when plans change. Andy was one of those exceptional guides. We were able to land safely at Mosquito Beach and have our lunch while we waited further instructions.

Those instruction — Hike back to Miner’s beach. That’s right surprise, you now have a 4 mile, 2 hour hike back to your pick up spot. Everything changed in a few minutes. What we had planned and what we were about to do were clearly two different things. We hadn’t planned for a hike. We hadn’t prepared for a hike. There were 2 couples and our guide Andy. We now had to figure out how to carry our personal baggage and hike back 4 miles in either water shoes or bare feet.

You see, it is moments like these that define us. It is the chance to look into our souls to see what we are truly made of. To find out if there is a thread of steel that is woven into our soul or if we are find out there is a hollow vacant space. Upon looking inward you are going to find one of two things. The Reinforced steel support structure or absolute emptiness. What are you going to find?

When you are required to start looking inward and find that you haven’t built the steel reinforcements, there is nothing but absolute panic. A panic that causes you to freeze and not act. A panic that causes you to lash out at others. A panic that produces a complaining attitude. A realization that you should have done things different but by then it is just too late. You are in a situation that is completely out of your control and you are forced to adapt and make the best of the situation.

This is the time to Embrace the Rain!

I can say from the deepest part of my heart, I am blessed beyond words to have found my best friends and soul mate to embrace the rain with me.

Boy did we embrace the rain, both literally and figuratively.

With both couples we had no other options but to hike back. It was probably the most fun I have had in a very long time. Within 10 minutes of starting our hike back the sky began to rain, slow and steady. The type that you know will last a long time and drench everything. We LOVED it. It was a time we will not soon forget. We hiked for almost 2 hours and for 1 hour and 45 minutes of that hike we were drenched. We were virtually alone along one of the most amazing cliffs in Northern Michigan hiking in the pouring rain and absolutely loving it. We wanted this. We embraced this adventure know that we had the stamina and the courage to tackle the hike.

These are what memories are made of. These are the times that you look back and say we built a foundation that allowed us to “weather” (pun intended) any type of storm that may show up. We have spent the time building our souls so when things like this do happen we are able to rely on the support of our internal structure.  

What have you done lately to build your internal structure? Are you creating a foundation that will allow you to weather the storms that come in your life?

Creating a true balance in life is all about being able to —

Enjoy the Sunshine

… while there is time to enjoy the sunshine and

Embracing the Rain

… there will always be rain in our lives.