Yes I'm going to Death Valley again. I leave tomorrow at 5 AM, on my second annual solo trip to the desert. Some of you might remember what a mess my heart was in last year. It was a profound time of healing. Experiencing the full force of heartbreak alone in the desert is something I can hardly describe.
Last week at a fun party after a fabulous city hike in San Francisco, I found myself joining a conversation, with a group of women I barely knew, about what a difficult year it had been emotionally. "My heart was broken TWICE in barely over a year. What a fool," I declared shamefully. One of the women responded "At least you were able to fall in love, and you grew from it. I had a tough year and I can't say that I gained a thing."
I don't know why I'm going to the Death Valley again. Maybe because it is so damn beautiful. The space and the silence of that place is embedded so deep within, that I can imagine it's vastness expanding inside me, pushing at the boundaries of my heart. When I arrive in the dessert it will be as if I'm living, walking, hiking, eating, reading, praying, singing, moving inside of myself. There will be no distinction between inside and outside when I return to Death Valley. There will be no past or future, only the singular space of the present.