The Lowest Point

Over 170 feet beneath the earth's surface - the lowest point in Lincoln Caverns - was one of the highest points of my week. On an hour-long tour of Lincoln Caverns and Whispering Rock in Pennsylvania, I climbed up and down countless stairs, kept up with my family and our guide as we explored the caves, and had a thoroughly good time doing it. It felt wonderful to have a body that barely complained, especially considering just a couple weeks before I was dependent on two canes or a wheelchair to get around.

I did fall behind once. It was at that low point, when I knew I had a lot of climbing ahead of me. As I soaked in the beauty that was around me, I let go of any fear that my body would give out on the way up and any doubt that I wouldn't make it. The peacefulness of the cavern washed over me and I held on to that as we made our way back to the surface - and up a steep hill to another set of caves.

As we sat on benches to catch our breath after the steep climb, my gaze fell on the sign at the entrance to Whispering Rock:

Carrying those words with me as we continued our journey transformed a fun family outing into something deeper. With each step, I found my load a little lighter - forgiving Sproadic Artie for the damage already done; forgiving myself for not always being the best caregiver to myself and my family; celebrating the ease of movement, the joy of the moment, the ability to participate fully without pain or fear of pain holding me back. 

As I descended deeper into the next cave, I felt truly connected to those around me, to nature, to God: a mountain top experience - underground!


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