Why I choose to sleep on the ground for two weeks

Camping, as a vacation 🙂

I catch up on sleep. My body has time for maintenance in immune system, hormonal balancing, appetite regulation, etc. I slept about 10 hrs/ night and then still napped many afternoons…

It resets my circadian (i.e. daily) rhythm. Exposing myself to minimal artificial light allows the natural brain signaling of the sun, moon, and starts to get through! My physiology gets a boost when I can let its rhythm take over.

It’s fun to play with fire and enjoy food cooked over open flame!

Spending this much time with myself in nature allows me to reconnect with myself and my needs. For the first several days of our trip, I could be found in the hammock, napping, reading, or eating, that’s pretty much it – no big hikes or satisfying projects; just rest. I moved on to a different position or tasks when my body said to. I really tuned in 🙂 My experience looked so different from my husband’s in those early days – he hiked and biked because that was what he was called to do.

In our normal days at home, we (husband, daughter, and I) do our best to connect each day. But sometimes life gets full and real meaningful time together is lacking. Here, out of doors, we talk, snuggle in the hammock, read together, play cards, prepare, eat, and clean up meals together, watch the sunset, etc. Conversations that don’t evolve under pressure and time constraints happen here. I reconnect with others. 

When I spend this much time outside, without bathing all day in artificial light, I reconnect to nature, of which we are all a part! One morning, I saw a robin with his/her belly to the ground and wings outstretched. I panicked thinking that a bird had gone ‘kersplat’ out of a tree or something right over my campsite 🙁 I spent several minutes watching, waiting… Sure enough, the bird popped up and pruned, as if to say, “don’t worry about me, I was just sunbathing!” Did you know they do that? I can be found on hikes with my plant ID books, comparing sources to identify Pacific Northwest berries, edible leaves, etc. Have you ever felt the leaves of a Thimbleberry bush? So fuzzy! And those berries?!?! Tart and so unlike raspberries or blackberries 🙂 With no phones (except for taking pictures and coordinating with daughter), minimal lighting (there were campsite bathrooms), fresh air, lots of dirt, sand, sun and sunsets, gulls, seals, Murres… aaah.

I had been on the trip for 5 days when I sat and wrote this, with pen and paper. Time for on screen editing now that I’m back in the ‘real’ world…

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