Finding Your Path

Badlands Gypsy

The beauty of this journey- is we are all unique and different in our paths. Even with similar interests, our spiritual journeys are all going to be different.

Finding our footing is the hardest part, and often times we do this multiple times in a year. We find our balance, our inner harmony and in a quick change- we lose it and have to find it all over again.

That is because time is never ending. The only thing constant is change- as ironic as that is.

Our path is never set in stone, because of our free will- we can change our path at any given moment- which is why I find "fortune telling" to be a little far fetched. At any moment I could change my path- and that "fortune" would be completely changed.

But what we can tell- is if we are on the correct path for our highest good.

I remember the first time I was asked about this- asked "How do I know when I am on the right path"

My answer came so easily to me, that I had to kind of chuckle.

The Ride

When you're riding in the Badlands- like, the real rough country, where sandstone, water erosion and gumbo all cause a serious disturbance to your normal trail.

The trail starts off great. A nice cow trail with space around the trail for you to comfortably ride your horse, beautiful scenery and a nice peaceful ride. There might be rough spots in the trail, where the rocks begin appear in the trail and your horse has to navigate through the rough patches. You trust you are still on the right path, the path just got a little rough.

You continue on your trail, and it's beautiful. There are Eagles flying over head, the wind is a nice soft breeze and you see some beautiful wildlife. You encounter a few rough patches, but you continue on your path.

Soon the path turns into a deer trail, and it becomes harder to navigate with your horse. The ride is less enjoyable now, and is more work then pleasure. Climbing steep hills, drop offs on either side and you are placing so much faith in your horse, that you have no control over the situation- you have to solely trust him.

Quickly there is no trail at all, and you are navigating through holes in the ground from the gumbo collapsing on itself, and to be frank, this ride just sucks at this point.

So when do you differentiate between "This is just a rough patch," and "We need to change course"

To me it is simple. There are signs at every turn. The trail becomes less of an enjoyable experience, and more of a - strategic planning. Now- there is absolutely nothing wrong with some back country riding with no trails. In fact, I love it and it really creates a good bond with your self, your horse and your trail partners.

But taking unnecessary risks and putting yourself in a position to have your horse fall and hurt himself isn't worth that challenge of a "difficult ride".

How does this relate to our life?

To me it is simple. We will encounter rough patches- we will always have to navigate through some shit. But with some patience and sure footedness, you can easily navigate through these lows.

But the signs are there when you are veering off the path, or if you are now on the wrong path.  The journey becomes sketchy. You are no longer putting faith in some sure footedness, you are just straight up flying by the seat of your pants and hoping it works out. There are obstacles at every turn that you just are struggling to navigate around, and in some instances the ground falls out right from under you, and you fall into a big ole hole!

How do I know when is time to bail and chose a new path?

To me, it becomes crystal clear when you are meant to change paths and pursue a different path. And the funny thing is, the path is always evolving and changing. Every minute you were on a specific path, is just a chapter in your book that you were meant to experience.

There is no way to be on the perfect path immediately from the beginning- its just not possible. But those paths that lead you to the point where they just end- and you chose a new path, all were meant to happen. Because that path taught you something, showed you something about yourself, your life and your journey that you were meant to experience. Even if that “something” was just relaxing and resting your soul or your physical self for a period of time.

For me, the signs are there. It becomes crystal clear when you are on the wrong path. You get a flat tire going to a job interview, you can’t find your lucky necklace or just everything about the process fights you.

And then there is when it’s just so easy. You get pulled over, and get out of a speeding ticket you deserved, and meet the person who purchases your house, so you can move across the country. Your house sells in a week after being on the market- as you prepare for a move across the United States. The cherry on top- speeding to the airport got you there in time to catch a plane that was supposed to leave hours ago- and you avoided being stuck in the airport for an extra six hours- all based on a gut feeling you had to get to the airport RIGHT NOW. The signs are there, if we open our eyes and see them.

It’s like when you avoid falling in a hole on the original path, and look to your right and see a beautiful cow trail and you continue the journey, just changing course a tiny bit.

What do you see, when you open your eyes?  

Victoria Dellapaolera
Victoria Dellapaolera

Victoria is a Christian minister practicing spiritual healing and development in Williston, North Dakota. Victoria has worked with horses her entire life, and has learned many of her healing techniques from the horses.

She graduated from West Virginia University in 2020 Magna Cum Laude with a bachelors degree in Human Services and Sports and Exercise Psychology; gaining her associates degree in Farm and Ranch Management and Equitation from Dawson Community College in Glendive, Montana in 2012.

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