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  • Writer's pictureCarol Korenowski

100 Paths To Healing Trauma: Love Your Creativity

100 Paths

winter has long been my least favorite season

the cold air quickly chills me to the bone

I'd like to hibernate but I'm often lured outside

when it isn’t an artic cold deep freeze

by my dog, sunshine, sunsets, and star-filled skies

one day there was no external motivation

but with the new year comes new resolve

and a desire to move my body daily

urged me outside before the five o’clock darkness

I brought my headphones but put them away

deciding instead to listen to nature’s sound

and so I found myself alone outside

my furry companion otherwise occupied

out of habit I started toward my usual route

when I saw a path I usually pass

it looked stunning in the white and grey shades

of winter’s snow and frost and fog

I stopped and stared with a smile

pulled out my phone and took a picture

to share the joy of this moment

nature is one of my favorite places to be

for it offers a thousand opportunities

to pause and delight in beautiful simplicity

I admired nature’s brush strokes

overgrown bushes curved towards each other

reaching and interlocking, merging as one

the archway it created called me to walk through

the tall trees on the other side

offered a measure of depth and grandeur

I walked forward and stepped under

laughing out loud with a silly sense of adventure

entering the doorway to my own secret garden

every few steps I took my gaze was drawn

to the many different ways I could go

I started taking pictures of them all

marveling at the change in background

of every path I saw and every corner I turned

as I walked my thoughts flowed freely

and I contemplated life’s parallels to nature

just as there were a hundred paths here

there are many therapies and paths to healing trauma

yours may be straight, windy, narrow, or wide

some are fun, others littered with obstacles

and just as you think you’ve found an easy one

you might turn a corner and the biting winds

remind you nature is wild and ever-changing

challenge is a part of every transformation

sometimes you have to make your own way

or change your perspective to see new openings

maybe you have to persist, or stop to rest

or withdraw for solitude and silence

when I thought I was too cold to continue

I ran through a field of ice crusted snow

I was having too much fun to stop

as I explored new ground and crawled under bushes

I still remember the soft earth in that tree cave

the layers of leaves cushioning the dirt

the canopy of branches holding up past snow

the warm touch of air sheltered from the wind

the comfort of sitting in nature’s embrace

I felt like a child in a secret fort and chuckled

realizing what taking pictures had gotten me to do

in trying to show you all the paths I could find

for the first time in my life

I saw beauty everywhere

in the weeping brown grass that bowed with grace

in the death of winter that brings life to stillness

in the cold stones that hold ancient history

in the old stump that opens and curves

in the majestic tree reaching up to the heavens

and the worn black and blue door that burst with color

on the greyest day in the most magnificent way

my heart cracked open with love

so that what was once ugly to me

became the most beautiful thing

and then I was back where I started

leaving the archway to my secret garden

another time I might have watched the sunset

but the day's clouds encouraged me back inside

I kicked off my boots and hurried through the house

warmed my cold numb fingers in water so I could write

and tell you about my favorite day this winter

as night quickly fell outside

my inner light shone brightly

for what I most want you to know this season

is that healing happens a million different ways

even in winter’s cold grey and night’s blackness

today I healed by meditating, eating colorful food,

praying, trusting my intuition, walking, pausing

being curious, exploring, listening, looking, loving

moving, smiling, wondering, persisting, stopping

crawling, sitting, laughing, remembering, running

changing, taking pictures, writing, creating, sharing

your life is your art, your light, your way

the path to healing is as creative as you can be

your mind, heart, and body heal in every act of love

every therapy that helps you know yourself better

every moment where you feel safe

every form of true self expression

and every time you see and appreciate beauty

that old blue door will never again be ugly to me

neither will the deepest wounds or darkest parts

pain is but a door in your story

a path on the journey to love your creativity

-Carol Korenowski


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