We often talk about life’s journey don’t we. But it wasn’t until I met Yara Grant that I really discovered what that meant.

If you are a hiker, as I am, then we can visualise our path having many ups and downs, it gets craggy, sometimes it is paved.. sometimes the sun shines and sometimes we walk in cloud and gray.

We are usually well equipped with good footwear, but perhaps our most important item is our backpack.

At the beginning of our journey we depend on others to stock our pack with all the right things. In most cases this works fine, but sometimes things are left out or the wrong things put in.

Like a stone in your shoe, at first we don’t notice but gradually as our journey progresses these rocks become noticeably heavier and more irritating.

Eventually we need to stop as our backpack is too heavy to continue. most of us rest for a while and can resume. But the intervals between rests become shorter, the burden grows. It reaches a point where we cannot continue any more, either because we are now injured, or we do not have the strength to carry this load.

Those of us who become blessed with the power of consciousness discover a different solution.

We open our pack and one by one we remove the rocks which have formed in there. When we expose each separate rock in the light of the sun, suddenly it does not look that significant.

We need to understand from what it was made and the only way we can do that is to break it down into small pebbles. When we look at these pebbles they glimmer, they are actually quite beautiful. Abnormal forces at one point aggregated them into an ugly rock, a process we were not even aware of until now.

We scatter the little pebbles on the path as a reminder of how fortunate we have been but also as a sign to others of how simple and powerful this act can be. Anyone can do this if they believe.

Once we have smashed our rocks, we pick up our pack and my how feather light it now feels.. we want to skip again along the path! We stand tall and happy and suddenly other people on different tracks notice us, they feel our new energy !

A new path forks into ours, and from that emerges a beautiful companion who sensing our peace and joy wants to join us and become part of each and every step on our way. You could never have imagined that such a person could find you up in these mountains with so many trails and so many other people.

They didn’t.

They were guided there by Him, who was always with you, waiting for your welcoming call.

I opened my backpack in December 2014. The load during the previous 12 months had become unbearable. I lay on the side of the path tired, beaten determined to continue but not knowing from where I could get the strength.

I scared away family and special friends who wanted to help me

I was inspired to seek guidance from Yara. She showed me how to unpack my bag and pick out each rock. She showed me how to smash each and every one and scatter the little pieces at my feet where they now glint in the sun. She then watched as I picked up my lightweight pack and walked with me a little further as I stood taller, my face beaming. She showed me how to focus my new energy, previously and uselessly employed in carrying rocks.

I no longer need to look back, save to check from time to time if I can still see those little pebbles glinting in the sun. In fact, I keep a few of those pebbles in my pocket, just as a reminder! She showed me the foolishness of looking too far ahead, just to enjoy each and every feather-light step.

I am able to step further, climb higher from where the vista is so much more stunning. I feel I have more energy and love than I ever had! Most importantly she taught me the power of now, the power of gratitude for this beautiful place and the power of acceptance that the person who will join and stay with me on this journey is my life’s companion.


Peadar Hegarty