Let me preface this portion by saying that I hadn’t spoken to Beth prior to me sending my story over for an edit. I had just asked that she clean it up and make it more presentable. I hadn’t told her about Sun Dance that year yet nor about Jasmine but she clearly understood what my heart had wanted my words to say better. Here is her edit:
There is a girl named Jasmine. She is a traveler – an explorer – a hiker – a photographer. Her paths have led her to amazing people from all walks of life, and wondrous places of natural beauty. She is gifted in capturing the scenery that surrounds her in photos, but her true magic travels far beyond the footprints she leaves on the trail or the visions she captures through her lens.
Like many people, when given enough time in nature, she reflects. She will pause as a friend, family member or acquaintance suddenly flashes into her conscience. Not always will she even realize that she has used her energy coupled with that of the serenity surrounding her to awaken this special gift. But as she focuses on these people in her life, she passes her own peace to that of her recipient – tuning their energy rhythm to her own, and creating harmony for them from afar. She may not know that the person had a bad day, or a diagnosis, or was struggling silently within. And she will not witness how her reflection blew a calm breath over a friend in need, brought a needed tear to a sister, or a laugh to an acquaintance. All they will ever know is that a renewed peace has settled over them in just the moment they needed it.
One day, on a hike with friends, Jasmine borrowed a knife from another person in her party to obtain some hardened sap from a tree. She recalled suddenly a new friend, Sally, whom she had recently met at a Native American Sundance ritual. She had similarly borrowed Sally’s knife to collect amber from the many coniferous trees surrounding the Sundance grounds. As she continued gathering her current specimens she suddenly noticed two feathers floating near her. So engaged in her collecting and the thoughts of her new friend, she felt quite unsure whether the feathers had gotten caught up on the breeze from the forest floor, or if they had drifted down from the sky in just that moment. For reasons she could not convey, she took a photo of the knife with the two feathers and sent it off to Sally.
What Jasmine could not have known, was Sally’s experience just one year prior. Sally was participating as a supporter in her first Sundance, and as she was walking along one day, two small feathers fluttered out of the sky to land at her feet. Though she could not recall seeing any birds, she gazed upward briefly before bending to pick up the feathers. Given the events of the Festival, she wondered if they would hold special meaning for her one day – but like so many signs in life, it would take time before the feathers revealed their secret.
Thus the realization when she viewed the photo her friend had sent. The young bird who had shed two small feathers for one special person to find, matured to leave two larger ones for the second to happen upon. Linking those friends forever in a shared experience, solidifying the bond they had established, and to remind them of time together well spent.
So now you have both versions of that story and while I thought I might have time to tag on the epilogue, the day is done and my driver and I need to leave for the airport around 3:00 am! Wish me good flight and hopefully I have time to write in TN.
If not, guest blogs are always welcome.
Thank you Beth for the beautiful version.