What does it mean to be unplugged? For some, it’s no electronics, for us, it’s simply going far enough into the mountains of Colorado, that we no longer have signal. No social media, no need to look at our phones, just solely connected to each other and the world around us.
The benefits of taking a step back from the world are endless. As I sit here, by the fire, listening and watching the river rush by, I am thankful for the noises of nature and the silence. Because it is in our silence, where we find wisdom. Camping, allows us, my husband and I to tune into each other. Him an introvert, and me, somewhere in the middle, this is our middle ground. As I sit here, and watch him chop wood to make a fire for us, our girls, sleeping at our feet and nature unfolding around us, I realize the many blessings/gifts that I have been given, in this brief solitude. That despite the valleys that life sends all of us, among those valleys are, mountains and precious peaceful moments of solitude and rest.
Speaking of precious moments, I am so incredibly thankful for my little family. We have two adorable daughters, Misty (My hubby had her before we were married, crazy that she has the same name as me, but it makes trips to the dog park super fun haha) she is an eight year old Aussie/collie mix and Kayla is our four-year-old Irish Wolfhound/Aussie mix. One day we will Add a little cowgirl/boy to the mix, but for now, we are so happy being pet parents.
Which brings me to my four reasons, why I believe for our health and happiness, that it is important to unplug once in awhile:
1. To connect, we must first disconnect
We both, my husband and I, grew up in the country, me in a little country town and him on acreage. In the country, We work hard and we play hard, we respect our elders, wait until everyone is seated before we eat, say yes sir/no ma’am, and please and thank you. Growing up in the country, and also camping throughout our childhoods, taught us to be comfy in the silence. I had forgotten that in the military, and it wasn’t until I had been married to my hubby for a couple of years, before I became comfy with it again. We have learned in almost four years that when we camp, or disconnect from the world. We learn so much about ourselves, each other, and the world around us. We disconnected from the world, in order to reconnect in new ways.
2. To understand, what we have, we must go without
When we camp, we actually tent camp. My body is a bit too broken from my military days, to sleep on the ground, but we do sleep on cots. This is my first camping trip with an air mattress on top; it’s definitely different haha. We have been talking about a pop up (mostly because I want to learn to winter camp, but not be an ice cube in the morning), we just aren’t there yet. One day for sure!
All that to say, when we go without the luxuries/comforts of home: a dishwasher, a regular mattress, a heater/fan, and really have to create your own comforts, it teaches you what you have. And that lesson is worth re-living often, because you begin to look at the world in a new light, and realize you really are blessed/fortunate!
3. New lessons learned
Whether it’s about each other, or ourselves, we learn that when we unplug and explore the world without our regular comforts, we also learn a lot. Seeing my husband chop wood and be excited and content about building us a fire, made me realize that each time we camp, I fall a little more in love with my tough manly man. I know it sounds mushy, but every trip we learn something new. We have learned over the years, that we get cranky when we’re hot or hungry, haha and not to take things personally when things are said when we are either of those things. We have learned, that we both fear what is in the dark, but that we weren’t designed to live in fear, but to be brave and have courage. So I’ve learned to pee quickly, when I have to get up in the middle of the night to pee haha, and that even though my dog is black, she isn’t a bear. Although, I about died of a heart attack one year, when I had to leave the tent in the middle of the night and didn’t see her come up behind me, until she came up beside me. Oh my word, I about jumped into the river. All of these lessons taught us new things, and created who we are today. People who make us happy, people we are content with and people who we love. But we never would have learned those lessons, without taking time for the quiet.
4. Physical, spiritual and mental growth
If you didn’t guess my last lesson learned by being unplugged, it’s that we grow/learn a lot. For us, we like to be balanced between our physical, spiritual, and mental selves. I have learned that when I hike, workout, spend time with God and on myself, when all of those pieces of myself are in line, I feel whole. I feel above water and that life is good! Camping for us fulfills all of our needs. All of our desires that help us feel connected to the world and ourselves.
For us, camping is life! So being unplugged for us is a check into ourselves, and figuring out our place in the world. I hope that you found this wisdom worth it, and you choose to go camping. Remember camping isn’t about comfort; it’s about contentment, outside of our normal. And when we are comfortable stepping out of our box, we learn, and we grow! Which in my opinion is what life is all about!
Loves and hugs my friends!
P.s. I would love to hear about your camping adventures, please