I loved walking out among the horses and smelling the aromas of the prairie, listening to the bumblebees flit around the prairie roses; a simple red flowering weed that I always picked a bouquet of to enjoy.
This place was where I was most connected to my Dad.
I was his boy, he taught me to rope, ride, work with the cattle and the horses, taught me how to cook without fear of being imperfect, how to savor a great book, and the difference between whiskey and scotch.
He taught me everything, but the most important lesson he taught me was how to fight for love and happiness and how to stand your ground and not to walk away without a fight.
The summer before I turned 15 was the last time I felt truly connected to my Dad.
Recently when I took part in a painting session at the HWHV/CB Retreat for spouses, this is the image that appeared to me through the guided imagery.
I could feel the sun on my face and smell the distinctive scent of the prairie grass and dirt as I sat there.
For the first time in 30 years, I was able to pick up a brush and put my image of my mind onto the canvas. I could feel it oozing out of my mind, through my hands to the stark, white canvas and the tears fell and they kept falling.
This place and time is where I broke so many years ago.
It was earth shattering and yet I felt this serene, peaceful feeling come over me and the image continued to grow.
I am still trying to process what happened on that day with its vibrant blue sky and the cool green grass rippling in the gentle breeze, as I picked up the broken pieces of me, pieces that I had lost so long ago.
I do know now why that image is the one I see in my mind when I try to imagine a quiet spot, because it was a happy place for me.
I can look at the image of that spot every day and know that I may be battle-scarred and slightly bent but
I am not broken anymore.