It's been a long pause since I last really blogged, but the last six months have been rich in new bonds and introspection. Still, it's always an adventure in this life of mine. Who would have thought the little girl forced to be such an adult for so long would have grown up to be such a freaking hippie? ;)
Yes, friends, this life is a wild kind of rollercoaster. If you didn't already know it, which likely you do as you are also alive (congrats!), the only thing constant is change, and deep down I think this searching soul of mine has always embraced that idea. I just needed to recognize that.
All my life I'd felt a sense of non-fulfillment, a yearning for something that I could not shake, I could not wish away, but didn't really understand. Some people couldn't relate to these notions and some even resented them, and I felt guilty because I couldn't make myself settle for the life I had, and yet, I hadn't the clarity to grasp what I wanted, let alone the courage and faith to act on it. The idea of settling where I was made me feel like I was making a choice to die there. But I was relatively safe. And stable enough. Maybe not quite content, but, it was what I knew. Does any of this sound familiar?
Fortunately, life ran out of patience waiting for me to get a clue.
Remember several years ago when it seemed like everything had fallen apart? Like everything I'd built for a decade had been ripped away and I had no clue who I was anymore? Well, both of those are true. But there was a special kind of gift that came with embracing the chaos, even if I cursed most of the way. I'm convinced that, when everything is wiped blank, it's life 's way of forcing you to become acquainted with and aware of who you are now, who you can become. What is the fulfillment of your soul?
I moved to Seattle a year and a half ago on faith--not that I knew why I had to live here, but I knew why I couldn't stay where I was. I have survived--thrived even--in this place, on my own, of my own merit and efforts. I still felt like God/The Universe had churned up my innards like stew and then chucked half the contents for a while, waffling about in this foggy, hair-pulling void of existential cluelessness. And then, just as the fog started to lift, a nightmare...my brother died.
This was the unthinkable for me: One of the few forbidden scenarios that I imagined I could never weather with any sanity left intact. Why this? Why him? Hadn't he and my sister and myself--if I was going to be self-pitying about it--been through enough? There was no way this was real, and there was no way I'd get through it.
But I was wrong. Not only did I get through it, but I did so with a strength I didn't know I possessed, even while my heart screamed. And then I came out the other side. And then I was determined. It was about living my best and my truest for both of us. I knew he'd want it. The last thing he'd ever said to me was that he was proud of what I'd created and wished me success. Now I just needed to understand what success meant.
It took a series of quick, dramatic, tumultuous, sometimes heartbreaking and often infuriating changes for me to get a clue. In fact, it was on the recent wings of one such unpredicted transition (news that my landlord was selling my house), and while wrestling with a case of the "But I was so comfortable! WHY MEE!"-s, that I, quite suddenly, knew. I knew why. I realized who I was, saw the person I'd been fighting against for all these years.
It's in every book I write. The theme. It's been reflecting back to me in the most obvious and intimate ways, but I could not see it. I guess I just wasn't ready.
I am a nomad. I am my mother's daughter.
A scary thought once, perhaps. I resented her when I was younger, as we all tend to do. She was the woman who hitchhiked through my childhood, who just couldn't settle down, who seemed to have left us in misery without caring.
But as I grew older, I understood that my mother was only playing with the deck of cards she'd be dealt, and that she was, at heart, an adventurer, an experiencer, an amateur musician and a secret writer. She was an explorer with potential that struggled to manifest. And maybe--maybe I was just meant to pick up where she couldn't.
There's a scene from the movie Divine Secrets of the YaYa Sisterhood where the stubborn, somewhat imbalanced Southern mom says the following to her adult daughter, "All those years that I prayed, that I begged on my hands and knees for God to make me more, give me more, make me better, make me stronger, make me saner, make all my dreams come true, I finally got an answer...You. Right there in one person, all I’d ever wanted to be or do. And there you are. You came right through me and I never even realized."
So there I was, sitting in my car post the latest frustration, and not so much struck with a lightning bolt, but rather, just a calm clarity. I knew exactly what was happening. And I knew exactly what I had to do.
The reason I haven't been able to settle in one place is because I really don't want to. I really don't. Not yet, anyway. Because I am an experiencer. I am a nomad. I think, I feel, I write and I sing. I live to inspire and to connect. That's how I was wired, it's why I'm here. I finally got it. I knew that I needed to (borderline violently so) buy an RV, to get my editor's ass on the road. To be a teller of stories and a meeter of people. I've been given the tools, I just have to keep working them and set my intention.
Life's been one tough little shit, but there's a very obvious reason why it hasn't let me get too comfy, settle too long or sink too deep. She knows she has to kick me in the ass sometimes to get me moving on my journey. And ho-ly smokes, once we got up some momentum, things haven't stopped changing.
Guess that's a sign, huh? :)
Went to the bank today to start a saving's account for this ultimate purpose. I'm giving myself one year to save up for this RV (maybe a Class C?) and then I'm hitting the road, Jack. This girl's done repressing her inner gypsy.
It's in the genes, after all.
By the way, upon leaving the bank and getting into my car (I swear, all my best moments happen behind a wheel!), this song came on Pandora. I'm taking it as a sign, too.
Later, my sweet friends.