In the Valley

I missed my normally scheduled posting in the middle of the month because I was preparing to travel to Arizona, where I will be staying for a few months (la! I am so fortunate.)

I’ve been here a week, and I feel as if I am paused. I have none of my regularly scheduled activities and my work commute is about twenty steps.

I’m sitting in the shade on the patio absorbing the stillness around me. It’s so quiet I can hear the hummingbirds zooming around even if I can’t see them every time. I’ve seen either one very zoomy bird or about five in the couple of hours I’ve been sitting out here. A bevy of quail bobbed by earlier and now a woodpecker is dancing up the mesquite tree behind me.

The interlude is a part of the Hero’s Journey you might not know much about if your only exposure to the Journey stages is the movies.  In books and poems the Hero can rest/hide/recuperate in a protected place for long periods — even years — before completing her Journey.  That’s rarely part of a movie plot.  The interlude gets shaved down or cut altogether.

An interlude can occur at any point after crossing the threshold and even between Journeys.  I think what is key is the safety and serenity the Hero feels that allow her to heal (when injured) or turn inward, focus, and make decisions clearly.

From here she can decide to press on or stop the Journey.  I don’t know what the statistics might be for who gets back on the Journey and who just stays put and never finishes.

It’s important to note, though, that it doesn’t matter how long you stay in the valley.  It’s your Journey; you get to decide.


Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash




exposure is limited to movies. Books and poems

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