Support comes in many forms…. From the outset, our plans felt blessed by synchronicity and grace. With our iPhones giving us on-road accessibility, friendly text messages and emails continued to give us the almost uncanny support that began when we first made the decision to walk.
The morning after we decided to make this walk, a little package dropped through my letter box; inside was a set of beautiful prayer beads, complete with a scallop shell, that would support me in my spiritual preparation. Such signs of support continued through every stage of our planning and our journey. With no conscious planning, a very special spiritual mentor just “happened” to be in Chartres the week we walked, and was on hand to greet us with ceremony and gifts when we arrived. Another mutual friend stepped up to support me through a moment of difficult challenge. Perhaps more than ever before, I was aware of how blessed I am by the people in my life.
On Thursday evening we were invited by a private group to join them in their private candlelight labyrinth walk and prayer circle in the cathedral. What magic!
Some of you burned candles for us, some walked labyrinths, others sent messages of support and dedicated some of your activities in support of our pilgrimage. As you prayed for us, we were also thinking of you, weaving you into fabric of our walk and appreciating your presence in our lives.
Several friends sent little tokens for us to carry — sweet grass for smudging… small bags of affirmations to support and inspire us on the days we walked, one to be drawn at random morning, noon and night… an angel card for each of us — Lisa’s was Trust; mine was Release, and I felt her close as she encouraged me onwards during my quiet hours of walking…
Some of the clothing we wore was borrowed, as was some of our equipment, a seemingly small thing, but something I thought a lot about as I felt my walk being linked to dear friends and earlier walks. On some deep level I felt their experiences informing and shaping mine. Connection is a precious gift!
And I want to mention another kind of support… trekking poles. Pure magic! I had never walked with poles before, but so many people had recommended them that I decided to give them a go, imagining myself with a traditional Pilgrim’s Staff. I was worried about losing my balance or tripping over my own feet if I got tired or hungry. Having heard that poles give a full body workout, I assumed one pulled oneself along with the poles, but what I found is that they sort of walk themselves, moving with the movements of my hip. I was enchanted by their companionship and rhythm.
Walk cheerfully over the world, answering that of God in everyone. — George Fox