Nothing beats the love and support of a good partner.

It is Sunday, September 30th and I am writing this at Governor Dodge State Park campsite 349 in our dark green 1999 Dodge Ram conversion van. I backed up the van to the electrical hookup just like a huge RV instead of this little van and pushed the cord to my lap top out the little pop out window. The back bench seat folds down to create a bed big enough for Mike and I to lay side by side. I am lying here on top of the sleeping bags which are zipped together to create a sleeping bag for two, typing. I am not really comfortable but not uncomfortable either. I’m alone expect for the dogs. One dog, Angie is on the floor by the bed sprawled on her pet bed. Dean-o, the other dog, is up here with me. It was a trip getting here I’ll say that, deciding whether to come here or not. First it was yes, then no, then yes again.

A few days earlier.

The Love and Support of a Good Partner

the support of a good partner“Mike I want to drive up to Governor Dodge and hike. The fall colors are so beautiful. I can leave Sunday. Spend the night and come back Monday. That will give me two days of hiking. What do you think?”

“I think that would be great.”



Of course he thinks it would be great. He knows I love to hike. He knows I love Governor Dodge. He knows I am enthralled with the fall colors this year. And most importantly, he wants me to do what gives me joy. We could have come together. We could have left on Saturday and returned on Sunday because he would need to be back for work but since his health issues of arthritis and gout in his big toe he doesn’t enjoy hiking much anymore. Plus he’s not too big on driving even if it is only two hours. So I came up with this big bright idea all on my own for myself.

Saturday night, the night before I was to leave while lying next to Mike who was also reading, I set my book down and looked over at him. I realized I didn’t want to leave him. Yes, I love hiking and Governor Dodge but I don’t like leaving Mike.

“Mike, I’m not going,” I announced out of the blue.

“Why,” he asked turning to me placing his book spread open on his chest.

“Well, this book I’m reading is too scary. It’s about a woman who survives this rapist murderer and she helps get him sent to prison. He is getting out of prison and now he is going to be after her. It’s going to be one of those on-the-edge books where she is on step away from danger. I’m sure she will come out OK but the book is just too dark for me. And it’s scaring me now. Anyway, I don’t want to leave you.”

“You’re an independent woman. You can do this.” Mike picked up right away that the book wasn’t the real reason.

“Maybe, but it’s my choice not to leave you. So, you don’t have to think I’m not going because you are making me.”

“OK,” he said knowing full well it is of little use to argue with me.

With that I toss my book on the floor vowing silently to myself not to finish it and turn off my bedside light.

The next morning at around nine o’clock all of a sudden going to Governor Dodge didn’t seem like a bad idea. The sun was up and the scary thoughts and the sadness about leaving Mike have vanished with the night. After all I have to walk the dogs anyway and the fall colors are not going to be around much longer. All we need is one strong wind storm and they will all be knocked to the ground. What the heck I should go.

“Mike, I think. I’m going to go after all.”

“OK.” and with that he immediately sets out to get things ready for me. He remembered I wanted to take my hiking boots which were out in the shed. He got those and put them in the van. He got together the sleeping bags, a folding chair, flashlights, lighters and fire starters so I could start a fire. The day before when he thought it was a go, he went to the store and bought me some red grapes, pineapple, bananas and strawberries. Now that it’s on again he cut up the pineapple and strawberries, put them in containers along with the grapes and set them in the cooler he dragged out. He packed in some bottles of water.

“Do you want your salsa and chips,” he asked.

“Yeah,” I said not giving them a thought till he mentioned it.

“What about a Coke.” I looked at him quizzically wondering, should I?. I don’t drink soda at all but once a week we have a Coca Cola in little glass bottles made in Mexico with sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup. They are more expensive than regular Coke but worth it.

“Go ahead. Treat yourself.” I grinned.


I gathered together some clothes and put them in a backpack. I packed up my laptop and some books. Mike got the dogs food, their bowls and leashes. He put all this in the van. We were rushing around in a flurry to get me on my way. Within the hour I was draped over him in an embracing hug saying good-bye.

“I don’t like leaving you,” I said into his neck.

“You’ll be fine. You’ll be hiking,” he said squeezing me tighter.

As long as I thought I was just going for a hike it felt OK, but camping over night. I don’t know. We broke apart and looked each other in the eye.

“I could always come back after I hike,” I said with a sheepish grin. “Not even stay over night.”

“Just let me know so I can get my girlfriends out of the house,” he said. I punched him in the arm. “No, really, Janice, you’ll have a good time.”

“Well, you know I’ll be calling you.” I said as I got into the van.

So, I drove two hours to go hiking feeling apprehensive, selfish, guilty, silly. Many people do this kind of thing, I thought. They drive hours somewhere to do something they love to do. I don’t know why I should feel like I’m doing something so weird and crazy, so wrong.

About halfway there I smiled to myself thinking about the last-minute running around we both did just so I could go for a little trip out hiking in nature. How blessed I am. I am with a man who goes out of his way to help me get what I want out of life. I feel a fullness in my chest that spreads upward causing my scalp to tingle realizing what Mike did to help me get on my way. This is what a marriage, a partnership, is all about, isn’t it? Being a support, a catalyst for the other to ‘go for it’. Our marriage has had its ups but it is times like this that I understand how truly blessed I am. Nothing beats the love support of a good partner which colors my world as brightly as the fall colors.  My partner, my husband meets the seven qualities of an ideal partner that I found on Psychalive.    I just hope I do the same for him.  I hope I am an ideal partner for him.

And so I hiked for two days, four hours a day. I snapped pictures every step of the way. And, as it turned out, I had cell phone coverage even on the trails and called Mike often sharing little adventures with him. The first thing I did, after hugging Mike, was sit down and show him my pictures. I don’t know if they captured the beauty of what I was seeing. Being there and seeing the colors, inhaling the fall aroma and listening to the birds can’t be totally captured. I put a little slide show together adding some word values to a few of the pictures. Values that being on my hike, admiring the colors and having the support of Mike inspired. It took me quite awhile to put it together which is the reason for the lateness of the post. I hope you enjoy what I put together.


13 thoughts on “Nothing beats the love and support of a good partner.

  1. Janice, I love your grateful attitude, the way you celebrate the simple, ordinary loving that you receive – and give. So nourishing. And your photos are stunning. I’m heading off next to read about the seven qualities of the ideal partner…hoping to meet him soon!


    1. Thank you Sally for that wonderfully fantastic feedback. It is nourishing in itself. I hope you do meet the ideal partner. For me however the ideal part was something that developed over time. I do believe we learned how to love one another in the way that supports each others growth. With that said, looking for a diamond in the rough, where the person’s ideal qualities are evident but not necessarily active. 🙂 ps I added deliberately delicious to my blog roll!


  2. Unbelievably wonderful sharing of the power and beauty of a relationship – yours and Mike’s. Unbelievably wonderful sharing of the power and beauty and messages of nature and Autumn.

    The you tube inspiring and a great source of meditation.
    I am absolutely captivated by the pictures, the colors, the values.
    Values that I want to meditate on, explore, and deepen it my life.

    I have read this blog several times.
    So real, so intimate, so “this is how two people relate, support and encourage each other.”

    I am honored and as I look at the colors now, I will be looking with a far greater, more inclusive perspective. Thank you Janice for continuing your share you….


    1. Wow, I am so glad you liked it. The message about relationships and the fall season. I am totally impressed, honored, appreciative of how much you got out of it. Brings tears to my eyes is what it does. Thank you, thank you, my friend.


  3. Janice,
    It is such an honor to have you share such intimate thoughts and beauty with all of us in your blog. I am deeply touched with tears in my eyes reading about your relationship with Mike. I’m sure it has taken many years of mindful living for the two of you to be so in-tune with each other.
    I will be thinking for a long time about the Seven Qualities of an Ideal Partner and what I can do in my relationship with Rob to be a more ideal partner to him. I am sharing the article with him also.
    I’m afraid I have waited too long to get out to see the fall colors for myself so thank you so much for your beautiful photos. I played them full screen and felt as if I were there. Autumn is a favorite of mine with its crisp beauty and wonderful smell – you have captured it all! Thank you and bless you.


    1. Pam, thank you. I am so glad my post meant something to you. And you are right, Mike and I are in tune with each other, most of the times. 🙂 Just now I was showing him something on the computer, how to look up books on the library web sight and reserve them. I didn’t hear something he said and he repeated with a “tone”. I had to remind him that I just sang his praises so should he be talking to me in such a tone. You know, I think I can get some mileage out of this post. hee hee.
      But seriously, as far as creating the “in-tune” relationship, for me, I know Mike loves me, so I love him and then he knows I love him and then he loves me and round and round. Once I asked him why he loved me and he said, because I loved him and funny that is why I love him, (or one of the reasons anyway). I think that’s the way it goes. The love feeds of itself and grows and morphs into the ‘in-tune’ relationship.
      I’m glad you were able to experience the fall colors through my eyes, my slide show which I had a great time putting together.
      Take care Pam, and thank you back. Blessings coming right back at ya. 😉


    1. You know what? More often than not I do things on the spur of the moment. So, I will ring you up and we’ll see if things click. It would be nice to have you come along.


  4. What a great guy this partner of your’s is! Really, it’s an honor to be mentioned
    in such a positive way. And I get to read your blog first! I’m a lucky guy. Writer
    and wife-you’re the best,baby!


  5. Thank you Janice for continuing to be an inspiration to me. I love reading your blog. And the amazing pictures you took and slideshow you created made me happy. I felt peaceful and contented after watching them. You are awesome!


    1. Did I comment on this Ann. I can’t tell so, then I will go ahead and comment on your comment anyway or again which ever it is. I am pleased as punch that you like my post and slide show. You are awesome as well with your music which can be found at Ann


  6. Hi Janice…What beautiful photos…and a great story. I can totally relate to the trepidation of going on an overnight camping trip alone, but I love that you did it, that your hubby encouraged and supported you in doing it!! Thanks for sharing! Kim


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