The Universe belongs to dreamers,
Magical thinkers,
And lovers of natural wonders,
Things that defy what humanity can now perceive.

Reality can be a prison
That stops us from our rightful expansion
Or reality can be a boundary
We need, to keep us from
A mountain better left unscaled.

The heart is the key to knowing the difference.
Taking the path of least resistance
Often feels like the best approach,
It often leads to an unsatisfying destination.

Look to those visions that come without ceasing,
They are the keys to open the path that is right for you.
Defying the gravity of what seems real
Often leads to pathways yet to be discovered,
And worlds to be explored.

Take up your dreams, visions, and courage,
Get out and explore so you can find the road
That is yours to follow.

By Cheryl McDonald 2023©

If you would like to hear me read this poem, please click below.

The Aborigines in Australia have a coming of age ritual called a Walkabout where young males go on a journey of living in the wilderness alone for a period of time to make a spiritual and traditional transition into manhood.

I created this digital composite called Walkabout, a few years ago and have rebuilt it in the last few weeks. When I first built it, it made me think of our transitions from life to the afterlife. However as I have been working on it lately I see more how it relates to all of the transitions occurring in our lives today. Especially for our young people

Being a kid is particularly hard these days. The pandemic, school shootings, social media, climate change, and even the normal stuff like learning the basics, how to fit in with peers, or even just physical growing pains of all forms.
Parents, teachers and other support people like grandparents, coaches, tutors are also struggling, with their own issues as well as trying to figure out how to support their children is a world that is evolving at a more rapid pace than ever before. The speed of change these days is mind boggling for everyone, and there is a huge mental health crisis right now.
Everyone is struggling and the economy is exacerbating it all.

It is already May, and soon seniors will be graduating in both high schools and colleges across the country. Another huge step forward into life as an adult. Some know what they want to pursue next, however, many don’t. It used to be college was pitched as the best path for everyone, and yet the cost of a college education can saddle a person with life long debt, before they even get started, especially if they aren’t sure what they want to do. There are many jobs that need training, but not necessarily a traditional four year college. College is not for everyone.
Our community colleges are a really good way to start if one is unsure, this is very true. It gives a person a chance to explore without serious financial commitment and most offer technical training for many of the very good paying jobs of the future.

I personally believe that giving a young person a chance to find their own path forward in life, is something kids need. They need a way to explore options for creating a life, discovering their talents and developing life skills. They also need time to learn about other cultures, other places and other ways of life. I know there are programs that support exploration and maybe they just aren’t available to all the kids that need them.

Our lives are full of transition points and learning to adjust to constant change is hard. Sometimes life really does feel like a roller coaster ride. It can be exhausting.

We here in western society are no longer a nomadic culture, and yet climate change and geopolitical events are forcing many to travel from their homes to find a new way of life. We are being forced to find new coping mechanisms and new life skills. The Aborigines learn young how to survive in the wilderness.

A walkabout could be what we all need when transition comes in to our lives. The last line of the poem above says, “Take up your dreams, visions and courage, get out and explore so you can find the road that is yours to follow.”

It has worked for me and brought me to places and experiences I never would have dreamed I could do when I was young, and I will never be too old for another walkabout.

Just thinking out loud, thanks for reading.
Have a Happy Day

Published by cherylmcdonald

Thank you for taking a little time to get to know me. Making art has been my life, I love to tell stories through words and pictures. I am a multi-media artist working in photography, watercolor, various drawing media, and sometimes digital art.

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