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Unpaved Road Home

 

They say, whoever they are, that the road to hell is paved with good intentions but what happens when the road isn’t paved at all? 

 

The road to my new house (shown above) is definitely not paved at all and I’m pretty sure I unintentionally stumbled upon the metaphor for my life right now.  The road I am walking, the path I am taking is definitely an unpaved route.  It is rough and wild, with persistent weeds poking through the center and potential surprises with every semi-cautious step. 

 

I feel like potential avenues abound and the opportunity for the new and surprising is invigorating, I don’t know what’s next but I feel something on the horizon that leaves me buzzing with energy. 

 

At the same time I remember the experience of jumping out of my car on the first day in Florida with the same buzzing.  I was invigorated by the junglish and wildly overgrown pocket of road that hid our home and the few small surrounding cottages from the view of the highway complexes and strip malls.  I excitedly pressed my feet into the soggy earth only to screech at the three thistly balls that had wedged themselves into the flesh of my foot pad.  Beauty with hidden prickers. 

 

I, again, see the potential for metaphor in this experience.  The excitement of the new, of potential, holds in it equal potential for prickers.  Often hidden prickers.  A new blog, a new website, a new state, a new job, new speaking opportunities, and writing opportunities–so many amazing possibilities for wonderful things but also for mis-steps. 

 

I admit that I am both excited about the jungle of the new and afraid of what thistly things might be burrowed in the rich soil.  It does not mean that I will not surge forward and enjoy the buzz but it does mean that I will be aware that nothing comes in a perfect package and not expect life without error.  Overzealous expectation: that has been a past flaw that I recognize in myself. 

 

Part of the meditative, internal knowing of oneself that is part of the constant journey of contemplative practices, spiritual and personal attunement, and what is such a valuable benefit of practices like yoga necessitate us understanding our good and our bad, our unhealthy patterns, and the bumpy unpaved nature of life’s road. 

 

I have learned from living in Florida thus far that a sunny day can go dark in minutes and fluffy blue skies will at some point turn black and angry.  I know there are thistles in even the greenest earth.  And sometimes a beautiful warm evening may contain a flying beetle attack (this is a very personal experience that included a twitch-tastic panic attack). 

 

Sunny Beach Day

 

Light can turn dark and we have to know that and be able to breathe and quiet our mind even more in preparation of the darker days.  It is easy to smile at the sun, we must also learn to smile at the black cloud.  That is a lesson I am learning and working towards daily.  I think it is a lifelong pursuit. 

 

As I walk down my unpaved path and drive down my new unpaved sandy street coming home from work I am still both excited and anxious; but I accept both parts of myself and work towards a smile whatever the weather. 

 

 

The road to success is always under construction.

Lily Tomlin

 

Dark Beach Skies

I am now entering the final stage of pre-deployment, as it were. While moving to the beach along the southern Florida coastline is by no means a military deployment preparation from the known to the unknown involves similar preparatory work: saying goodbyes being the most difficult and taxing even when compared with packing and unpacking. Goodbyes are laden with a semblance of uncertainty because strong ties hold through time and space but the weaker tend to fall by the wayside & assessing our lives, relationships, and human connections for staying power is a loaded element of relocation.

Packing and unpacking also had a metaphoric and symbolic weight that exceeds cardboard boxes and packing tape. We pack our lives, ourselves, our strengths, our weaknesses, our habits, and personal histories with us wherever we go. This fact was of great shock to me when, at 20 years of age, I sought, for various reasons, to escape my life, my memories, my patterns of behavior, and ultimately my self in its entirety in Colorado.

I learned the hard way, as was my nature during that time, that there is no such “relocation cure” and with time and some pain I was forced to come to terms and confront myself and am forever grateful for the lesson learned. I retain a great affinity for Colorado with it’s great expansive fields, neverending skies, and crisp white jagged peaks for being (maybe by happenstance) a place of resolution between me & my inner self.

I was watching the movie “Finding Neverland” the other night which illustrates the plight of one man–the creator of Peter Pan, as played by Johnny Depp–searching for his happiness and he does so through imagination and a return childlike world view. I think a universal human plight is for inner peace and a sense of happiness: moments and glimmer may glisten in our lives, in the right light it may even glow, but living in the chaos of the world it is difficult to retain.

Finding neverland is fleeting, keeping neverland is the real work and I believe for even the most contemplative mind and open heart it is a lifetime’s journey.

I am constantly working, as a contemplative neophite, just to find the momentary rays of bright white light and hang on for the brief moment to the peace it can bring to be in a true state of calm.

As a moving meditation yoga is a dance with this light. It is a learned practice to help facilitate communication with the self: mind, body, heart, soul. And if nothing else, moving to a new place or stage pf life having packed all the parts of ourselves from strengths to weaknesses if we have a contemplative practice or a yogic practice it is a lifevest we can unpack & use to stay afloat as we shift through change and the uncertain.

I hope that I can enact this for myself. I have a huge propensity towards confronting newness with frenetic paces: I tend to run a 50 yard dash & lose my stamina fast. I hope that I can learn from my life and my patterns and the lessons of my life.

Professionally and cerebrally I know the importance of self care–I tout it it coworkers and clients alike. Through meditative and yogic practices I know the soothing and healing nature of stillness and internal communication in silence. If I can take what I know cerebrally and what I’ve felt experientially I think it has profound potential to help me adapt: to give me a lifevest for strange new waters.

I just discovered a few days ago that although I am moving next Friday and my husband is coming with me due to some issues with transfer paperwork he will not be moving with me at present with an indefinite timeline for us ahead.

Adapting to change is what I need to do and I will take any lifevest available to me.

July 2020
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