I've been living in Vermont for just over a couple of years now and here in Bristol, I finally feel like I've found one of my spirit's homes. Whenever I drive out of the state, I literally feel my energy shift, like I'm driving through a force field or something. Ha! OK, now you're thinking I'm a total wacko. Well, I can't deny that entirely, but I swear I really do feel this way! Its like this warm fuzzy feeling that surrounds me when I'm here, physically dissipates. And whenever I drive back in, somehow, even if I'm in a bit of a driving daze or mid-conversation, I notice immediately when I'm back in the state. Maybe its a feeling I get, or maybe I just notice the disappearance of billboards and recognize the state road signs subconsciously. But one thing's always for sure, I'm so glad to be home.
I'm starting this blog today, in this new year of 2016, to document a journey. And as I write this I can hardly believe I'm doing it. I do not profess to have a great talent for writing. I journal, I write a song here and there. But a whole blog? For a year? A public confession of, well, how I am going to chase and hopefully catch my dreams? Ummmm, yeah. Let me lay it out for ya... (big breath!) Each week, that is 52 of these bad boys, I will climb the Bristol Cliffs (my darling town's local hiking trail) to clear my head, breathe the fresh Vermont air, and edge my way closer and closer to the life I dream about. And I'm going to tell you all about it! So what is this big dream you may ask? I'm working on that one, I'm working on that one...
4 years ago, the most darling, stubborn, hilarious, observant, sweetness of my heart was born. With the birth of SJ, I became a stay-at-home-mom. My career had certainly not ended, rather it went on sabbatical for a while, and quite honestly and thank freakin' goddess, is being completely re-evaluated. Mothering and wife- and/or partner-ing has been a wild journey too, and certainly has been a part of my dreams, but now I find myself feeling a tug at my heart to get moving in the direction of fulfilling career dreams again.
For many years I studied as an opera singer. And then for many years I was a teaching artist in NYC. I was lucky to meet, befriend, and work with some of the most incredible, creative, and caring people along the way. I was also so completely stressed out and I felt totally frayed at the edges. I think I even started to see and feel how those frayed edges could completely unwind, and that really scared the crap out of me. A different way was calling, nay, beckoning to me!
No, this is not the most original story you've ever heard... Artsy City Girl Flees the City to Find Peace in the Countryside. Truth is, I was never a city girl. And I'm not so sure I'm really a country girl either. But I know my heart sings when I'm here, and hell, just the fact that I can even HEAR my heart singing, I consider this to be a major accomplishment! But here's another truth: I'm not just seeking peace, I'm seeking adventure. I'm seeking MY adventure. And the great news is that I'm already on it! I think sharing it with you, (and I'm guessing that "you" might just be my mom and dad?!) will kick my ass in gear and start to shift my shit. (Thank you Allie and Steff and the BA Nation!)
And let me tell you, I could seriously feel my shit shift as I hiked up the cliffs trail today. With SJ tucked in at childcare, my husband (who is footloose and fancy free at the moment as he is currently between computer programming gigs) and I took up the hill after lunch. As we climbed he let me blab, and I unfolded my grand plan to blog by way of motivation to dream chase. And the dreams even started to show themselves... an arts partnership program in Addison County, an aromatherapy and therapeutic music business, even a deep rooted desire to perform and sing again. I swear I could hear all the hiding squirrels and forest creatures cheering along as said aloud so much of what has remained dormant for a while. It wasn't the first time I'd said, felt or thought these things, but I felt clarity, and in the midst of the Hogback ridge, I felt safe and guided to get on my way.
Hi, my name is Ali Dawson Gibson. I'm a healer, a singer and a teacher. This Blog, 52 Weeks of the Ledges, is from 2016 when I hiked this awesome Bristol Ledges trail once and week and shared my experiences. Enjoy!