As a Leap Year Baby, I’ve grown up with a healthy respect for February 29th. Today, I celebrate my 7th real birthday, deliberating my 28 trips around the sun. I spent the weekend in Zion National Park with two of my best friends, experiencing and reflecting on wonder.
My biggest wonder is why so many of us don’t stop and wonder more. Everyday the most awesome—in the literal sense—things happen. If I’m lucky I notice. If I’m disciplined, or open enough, I pause and feel deep gratitude. It registered this weekend that I’ve never felt the level of awe that Leap Year deserves.
We’ve constructed a way to measure past, present, and future, and the sophistication of our system of time is damned-near miraculous. And still, it’s so human—unable to be 100% accurate while being calculated thoughtfully enough to make up for our imperfection by adding this one day every four years.
I’ve been lost in an existential/spiritual crisis, a dark night of the soul, or maybe it was simply clinical depression. Whatever it was, it made me take a long hard look at my life, at life in general.
Sitting by The Virgin River and looking up at the giant mountains, I thought about the degree of destruction we continue to perpetuate to the earth and to each other. Looking at the magnificence around me, I felt so small. I realized that the earth doesn’t need us. We will either destroy ourselves and go extinct, making room for other species to evolve—or we’ll take a leap forward into a way of thinking and expanded consciousness that we can’t yet imagine.
While it’s certainly a leap of faith, I believe we are resilient creatures and are already on the cusp of major changes. We’re growing beyond the child who can’t yet comprehend the idea of other valid perspectives, or even other perspectives at all. We’re growing tired of fighting over who’s right or wrong. Our idea of Truth is becoming more nuanced, and we’ve realized if it’s true, then it requires no defending. It just is what it is.
On this February 29th, I ask you to consider what taking a leap forward in your life might look like. I ask you to take a leap into uncertainty with me, embrace ambiguity and non-dualistic thinking. What if we trust that truth doesn’t need arguing or defending and started looking at disagreements as an opportunity for growth, rather than a threat to our worth or pride? Is it idealistic? Sure. But society doesn’t leap forward without the courageous folks willing to leap first. I’m ready to make that jump. I hope you are too, because everything’s less scary with the support of an entire community committed to change.