Wind whipped past my face, cooling damp skin from the cloying heat. The country air smelt clean, laced with incense. I sped along on my hired mountain bike as I descended the hills of Ubud, Indonesia.
Tentatively, I took my hands from the handlebars and tried to balance with only the tips of forefingers. That mastered, I raised my arms up and out to my sides; closed my eyes, breathed deeply and immersed myself in the ‘rush’.
I smiled broadly; euphoric. I felt free. Nothing mattered; I was in the moment, physically, mentally and spiritually. I had truly let go and was soaring.
I’m thirty-two years old and that was the first time in my life I felt I had wings.
Wings? Yes, I have them. Here’s an epiphany – so do you! Cool, right?
Even though I’m in my thirties, mine are still small and weak; they’ve barely been used. But now that I’ve found them, nothing’s going to stop me from exercising them. I can’t wait till they’re big and strong enough to soar high with them, at length!
The reason I’m only now discovering my wings is that for most of my life I’ve felt trapped.
Severe illness caged me for the greater portion of my growing-up years. Depression and anxiety nailed me to the floor from age eighteen. And more recently, people’s expectations, marriage and a three-year-old son have felt like ties holding me back from living my dreams.
I don’t mean for that to sound so horrible. I love my husband and my beautiful son. I am blessed beyond measure; truly. It’s just that I’ve not experienced much of what I’ve wanted to in this life… yet.
So when I went to Bali, on my own, to a heavenly retreat for a week, it was a huge step to discover I had wings! And I got to test them out. At the time I thought I was just on a much needed break; I didn’t know I was discovering my wings. But my trip was significant.
And that no-hands-riding experience? That summed everything up for me. This is what I need. Leonardo Davinci’s words suddenly make sense; ‘For once, you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.’
So the question is not, do you have wings. It is have you used them lately? I hope you’ll unfurl your beautiful feathers soon.