In My Hometown

I have been doing a lot of packing boxes, planning, saying goodbye, unpacking boxes, painting and arranging. I have not, however, been doing a lot of blogging.

Here I am, back in my sunny hometown, in my husband’s condo that I haven’t quite learned to call “ours” yet, trying to let it sink in that life has significantly changed yet again!

I have been in a strange space the last month or so – I have been anxious. The anxiety phases come and go in waves, and perhaps always will to some degree, but this was rounding the corner into depression. I blame clouds, rain and a lack of blogging to some degree. I also believe that your body knows more than your mind at times. The anxiety was getting my attention and informing my brain that it was time to go home. Time to soak in the love of those I know best. Time for the comfort of the old and familiar. In other words, the place that once felt overwhelming is the place that is now offering security and freedom. I need those that knew her; those that know me better than I do. I can’t do it alone. The choice to go home was made more certain by the fact that everything allowing it to be possible presented itself to us without our even trying.

This move has been big for us. It meant leaving a beautiful place, amazing people and the ocean. It meant a two-day road trip through the mountains (beautiful). It meant Adam starting a new job again. It meant a huge lifestyle change (did I mention I filled up with gas about once a month on the island?). It meant gaining many friends and family. It meant entering back into the “real world” where the absence of my mom is felt more directly. It meant a salad of amazing, tough, precious things.

My first few days following the move were characterized by the aforementioned anxiety, but weight is slowly being peeled from my shoulders and I am realizing that I am safe – that I really am home even though the city and I are both different than two years ago. Though it was heartache-y to leave the island and our incredible people there, it feels right and good to be here.

Thank you, island friends, for being everything I needed the past couple years and still do. Thank you, home faces, for making this feel like the place we should be. Adam and I have constantly been in conversation about how lucky we are to be surrounded by such people wherever we are. We feel incredibly spoiled by the richness of our friendships.

So, cue Ty Pennington… “MOVE. THAT. BUS!!”

Just kidding.

Hopefully this marks the return to a more frequent blogging habit, thanks for sticking with me!

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Stand up or get off the train

Thank you Krista for featuring this post on your blog, it’s an honour to be invited into your journey. You can find Krista’s blog here: Words to Heal the Pain.

We were somewhere in the middle of a 17-hour train ride in India. It was more economical than a flight to our next destination, and besides, who doesn’t want to lock themselves in a tube of foreign culture complete with poorly-maintained, sticky-floored squatty potties?

I steadied my feet on the bouncing floor, held on to the door handle and popped my head out to take in the sight of lush green foliage and tiny specks of field workers. India constantly delivered a feeling of paramount beauty sprinkled with a hint of something could really go wrong here. It was perfect. During those minutes I stood gazing out of the train car, the thought ran through my mind, if something really were to go wrong right now, I would be okay. The realization was accompanied by a wave of peace that settled over my bones – I felt the most alive I have maybe ever experienced feeling.

What allowed for the peace and aliveness in that moment was the absence of fear. I have rarely before or after felt so okay with life being out of my control. Instead I have felt like I’m standing on a train car grasping the handle with two hands, and maybe wrapping a leg around for good measure. I’m too busy planning for all the things that may happen before the next stop to lift my head and catch the reflections of a beautiful world.

What I’m saying is, I’m scared.

Fear has grown slowly and steadily over the past few years. I’m realizing that I have darting, nervous eyes when I walk alone to my car; in the back of my mind I think that I’m bound to get sick; I count on facing a sudden giant roadblock in life; I am scared of encountering another traumatic situation or being required to have enough energy to handle something else big and painful.

This is no way to live. Even if these things may happen, the fear will suck dry every moment of good had before or after.

The only time I will know whether or not something bad will happen in the future is when my life is over. There is no possible way to live if I want to know what happens next before I’m there. It is imperative that I choose to fight fear.

It hit me this week, as I got caught up in all the good things ahead for Adam and I, that though I have lived for two and a half years subtly guided by a sense that something bad is going to happen, only surprising, couldn’t-be-planned-by-me, unexpectedly brilliant things have happened.

I can’t help but feel like I’ve missed the full impact of those things in the moment because of fear – however, I refuse to let the f-word keep me in fetal position any longer. I am lifting one finger at a time from the handrail. I am standing up tall and steadying my feet for a better view. I am holding on for the ride, whatever it brings – hopefully this time not a case of heavy food poisoning and a bomb scare, but then again, those are the things that make a 17-hour Indian train ride more epic than other train rides.

I’m going for epic.

The daily reminder on our headboard!