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"Stepping Out Of My Comfort Zone, Is My Comfort Zone"

When the universe is in control, you never know the magic that is bound to unfold. Black Girl Magic, that is.

Listen, as with most ch8ses, for reasons beyond my understanding, this ch8se champ found herself, once again leading the caravan into a maze of unnecessariness. Somehow, I find myself in my head and either completely ignoring the navigation, and/or so confident in knowing where I'm headed, that I follow my own intuition and we just end up in these random places. I can't always explain it; however, we always end up safe, with just a few extra turns and new places explored. It is always an adventure, that's for sure. One of our ch8sers said, she expects it every time and it just adds to the excitement of the day. You just wait, Sis, one of these days, we will go directly to the location with no detours, you just wait. LOL.

This epic adventure, was another Chef Roderick Cummings, aka Chef Rod's lead. Awesome AyJay and I thought we were adventurous until we connected with Chef Rod. He is Admiral Adventure! Ha, I think I like that. Rod is Admiral Adventure. He is fearless, and something like the energizer bunny. We will be carefully descending or ascending, and all of a sudden, you hear, where is Rod? Ya'll he finds the most precarious spots, and safely disappears like a ninja.

This location was nestled in the woods of North Carolina. We found ourselves at High Falls at Lake Glenville, NC. The drive to the spot was absolutely beautiful, from what I could tell. The curvy roads forced me to keep my eyes focused and hands securely on the steering wheel.

We arrive at the parking pad, across from an amazing lake. We were all excited to see facilities; however, were quickly disappointed after realizing the doors were locked. Come on Lake Glenville, what a let down. Nevertheless, we made our way onto the trail, which opened up to a set of stone stairs with wooden hand rails. The sight was inviting and surreal. Ya'll it was a crisp and cool morning, though we were all dressed and ready to go. Let me just tell you to use the "toileTrees" in the cool crisp air, ain't no fun at all. But guess what, this ch8se champ had her new Kula cloth, and she was happy to have it. That dang Kula cloth in the crisp air was comforting and an excellent gear addition. If you haven't heard of the Kula cloth, check it out here:

As we continue on our ch8se journey, we cross a lil bridge, more stairs, beautiful streams, more stairs, amazing sun rays, beautiful icicles, and even ran across a lot of needle ice. I actually learned about the needle ice from our photographer friend, Renee, whose something like a horticulturist. She knows a lot of different vegetation, she is a really smart young lady.

Beyond the stairs, past the beautiful vegetation and needle ice, we open up to another spectacular waterfall. We find ourselves positioned at the top portion of the fall. She is beautiful, bold, and majestic. There is space that affords us the opportunity to stand comfortably and gaze at her beauty. It is cold, and there are areas around her that are frozen and inviting. Though we don't dare get too close, we admire her beauty, and proceed to the pool below, where there are great boulders waiting for us to rest on and safely admire the magic.

It is here we take countless selfies, group shots, and just soak it all in. Mr. Griff and Mr. Tim have joined us again. I absolutely love it when they ch8se with us. They are a breath of fresh air. They help us navigate the space in areas that prove to be challenging. They also occasionally provide a bit of entertainment. This ch8se was no different. While Rod disappears to the very top of the waterfall, I mean the very top, we look for him and discover he sits at the top like he is in a recliner. He is so comfortable and so unbothered. He has found his high spot, and Mr. Tim has found his rock. Ya'll he was searching for a comfy rock to just chill on, and he found it. These guys were in an actual playground of goodness. It was a beautiful sight to see. It is nice watching these guys have a good time and stepping outside of their norm.

I made my way to the top of one of the rocks that helped the men safely cross the water, and at some point my nerves left me hanging right there. Though there was a lil peer pressure from my two ch8se champions, this ch8se champ knew her limits and had no intentions of becoming a fall statistic. No ma'am. After my nerves left me hanging, stayed on the safe side of the rock. I seriously got the wobbly knees, and a sense of fear tried to creep in, but with the aid of a walking stick, I summon some nerves and made my way back across the water and got back in my lane. Secretly, I was envious of the guys, cause I wanted to get in closer, but wisdom prevailed.

We each found our space. We found our vibe, our escape, and our peace. I believe we all found our release with every exhale, and our grounding with every inhale. I would like to believe that we also left behind anything that we brought down those stairs with us, that was too heavy to carry back up. I know I did.

Now there was a ch8ser, one of our men, who safely made his way to the other side of the water; however, his return was not the same. He actually lept to the rock, to get back to our side. His foot landed on the rock, but that dang slippery water would not be defeated. It was at that moment, I was thankful I too did not attempt it. Our friend was wet, but thank God, he was not injured. Ya'll this was our first fall in years. I didn't actually see it happen, I caught the aftermath and the video replay; yep, his wife was recording, as were a few of our ch8sers. Not that there was anything either of us could have or would have been able to do anyway.

The ascent proved challenging, but not impossible. There were countless stairs and what goes down, most assuredly has to come back up. And up we went. Once we reached the reward of making it to the top, we grabbed our lunch and headed over to the lake.

It was at the lake that we paused in the moment, and reflected on the adventure of the day. We spoke of the goodness that oozed on the trails with every step we took. Conversations of healing and victory ensued. We paused to appreciate the love of the ch8se community and gave respect to the space we were all in together. Many of us shared our personal victories and eagerly look forward to ch8se again. It was our Lovely Lynn Jones, aka Auntie Lynn who shared the most impactful statement of the day. She said, "Stepping out of my comfort zone, is my comfort zone." Here you go, read it again: "Stepping out of my comfort zone, is my comfort zone." She spoke of her victories, and how she has become more comfortable doing the things she used to be uncomfortable doing. She spoke of how proud she is to have stepped out of her comfort zone and find it to now be a true source of comfort. How about you? Are you stuck in an old comfort zone?

After we have all loaded into our vehicles, some of us head back home and others stop to visit our friends at the Wander North Georgia store. Here we were welcomed by Richard, who we all adore, and were assisted by Kenzi, and Alexis. Everyone at Wander is awesome; however, Richard simply won our hearts. Thanks Kenzi for being our photographer. We will see you all soon. Alex and Josh were not there, which simply means we'll be back.