everyone looks like ants down there

It's so cliche, but so true. Being up on a mountain gives you real perspective. Mountains are referred to in the bible as places where prophets received direction for their people. Even where they received commandments. Mountains are places where temples are to be built.

When our family climbed up to the Y on the side of the mountain in Provo last month, my husband and I stood and looked down and felt our smallness. We looked south and pointed out our itty bitty town of Springville, which is peopled by 25,000 but looked a lot smaller than that from a couple thousand feet above it.

My husband has been struggling here and there at work, wondering if he is doing what he wants to be doing for the next twenty good working years we have left. He admits that sometimes he is jealous of my enthusiasm for my job and my love for the kids and for my coworkers. He feels a bit hung out to dry because he felt a real calling to his profession years back but has lost some of his zeal. There are parts of his career that he is nuts for and has excelled at, but there are parts that he would like to have surgically removed. Unfortunately, that is not going to be a real possibility. He can unintentionally get caught in the whirlpool of feeling down and close to desperate. Can you say "mid-life crisis"?

But when we were up on the mountain for that afternoon everything was different. The adrenaline helped, but I believe that the height of the climb and the view from our final destination was medicinal. All of his concerns are not solved, but for that day they were put in perspective and all seemed right with the world.

It makes sense to me that these mountains were formed by masses of land being smashed against each other. Maybe we need a little smashing and a little climbing before we start to get perspective on our own itty bitty lives.


Heidi | November 14, 2008 at 7:00 PM

No doubt (about the rock smashing part)! Is there a perfect job out there? If there is, I sure want to know about it. I know you love yours but I doubt you could support your family on it (salary--D-). My husband retrained for his current profession because it was less stressful than what he had been doing and so he would have lots of time off with the kids. Every teacher loves his job in June July and August but it is only November and all the teachers (or so he says) are starting to complain of fatigue. We spend a lot of time thinking about what he could/should/would do if he had a choice--but it is hard to come up with anything that doesn't have the parts that need to be "surgically removed". Sigh.

Heather | November 14, 2008 at 7:28 PM

Wow, you can really express things vividly. It seems hard to imagine doing any one thing for twenty plus years, I think it is human nature to get restless. Sounds tough. I hope no one gets seriously hurt in the smashing.

Luann | November 14, 2008 at 8:20 PM

I love what you said about the climb and the view being medicinal. I am willing to bet that the view meant even more to you because of the physical effort it took to get up there. I tend to appreciate something more if I worked really hard to get it. It seems counter intuitive, but sometimes the more dents and scratches we pick up on our way to a goal, them more it is a salve for the soul.

Little GrumpyAngel | November 14, 2008 at 11:50 PM

My husband is in his mid 40's and I think he is in the same place as your husband career-wise. I think there comes a time when men pause to see if it is as good as it gets, and it can turn into the so-called mid-life crisis if they lose their footing in life. Trips to the mountain (in our case, the coast) to gain perspective is indeed "medicinal". It doesn't fix the problems per se, but it helps us to step back and look at them at diffeent angles.

You look like you have a really nice family. And they indeed are all boys! You must be super woman to keep up with all that masculine energy and stamina.

LisAway | November 15, 2008 at 1:16 AM

Is thirty five too early for a mid-life crisis to set in? Because I'm starting to wonder about my better half. . . :)

I love the lookout into the valley there. It's amazing how serene everything looks from above and it's great to go up and forget about the little details going on down there. And to remember that, while it sometimes seems like all those details, stressful and otherwise, are our reality, the calm serenity that we see from those higher places is ALSO reality.

Melissa | November 16, 2008 at 9:53 AM

Kazzy, I saw your comment on Lisa's post and realized we have a lot in common. My husband also served his mission to Montreal, and I grew up in Springville! What years was your husband in Montreal, and whereabouts do you live in Springville? I lived a block away from Art City Elementary.

Mrs4444 | November 22, 2008 at 3:14 PM

Mr.4444 is in the same boat, but I think it's just a coincidence that he's in his 40's and hates his job; it's a relatively new job for him, and not recession-proof, so he's liking it as much as he needs to :)