“I think midlife is when the universe gently places her hands upon your shoulders, pulls you close, and whispers in your ear: I’m not screwing around. It’s time. All of this pretending and performing – these coping mechanisms that you’ve developed to protect yourself from feeling inadequate and getting hurt – has to go.

“Your armor is preventing you from growing into your gifts. I understand that you needed these protections when you were small. I understand that you believed your armor could help you secure all of the things you needed to feel worthy of love and belonging, but you’re still searching and you’re more lost than ever.

“Time is growing short. There are unexplored adventures ahead of you. You can’t live the rest of your life worried about what other people think. You were born worthy of love and belonging. Courage and daring are coursing through you. You were made to live and love with your whole heart. It’s time to show up and be seen.”

~ Brené Brown

James Ryan
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Recently, I have realized that a great majority of my written work has never been published, nor was it ever intended to be. Most of it in fact, is nothing more than a bunch of creative ideas – unfinished fragments of thought – experiments in thinking. Ideas normally only reserved for one’s private journal....

Waterwalker

James Ryan
This feature-length documentary follows naturalist Bill Mason on his journey by canoe into the Ontario wilderness. The filmmaker and artist begins on Lake Superior, then explores winding and sometimes tortuous river waters to the meadowlands of the river’s source. Along the way, Mason paints scenes that capture his attention and muses about his love...

“To achieve a relationship with the land, one must travel on foot or by canoe and camp under nature’s canopy. Even those of us who do are often in so much of a hurry that we see and feel very little. Too often it is the destination that matters and not the journey itself.” – Bill Mason

James Ryan
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In my last post, I talked about my desire to hike all the way across Short Hills Provincial Park before eventually turning around and heading back to the Rockway Conservation Area prior to sunset, only I didn’t quite make it all the way across. Without knowing exactly how much more distance I needed to...

“There are lessons in life that can only be learned through fairly massive deviations from our normal, comfortable routines. These lessons alter our perspective on life and better equip us to deal with life’s unforeseen challenges. They can sharpen our optimism and generate a deeper appreciation for the simple things in life.” – Jared Campbell, the 16th finisher of the Barkley Marathon

James Ryan
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“This is the way we fall. First we lose our balance, teetering precariously on the edge of uncertainty, until, mercilessly, gravity takes over. You can’t outshine gravity.” ― Cassia Leo When I set out to hike along the Bruce Trail from the Rockway Conservation Area all the way to Short Hills Provincial Park, I...