When I was a child, under seven certainly, I did not want to go home with my parents after a visit to my dad’s parents. I was so clear about “I don’t wanna!” that I would hide under their bed. Way in the back so no one could get at me from either side.
Many years later, when I was raising my own daughter, I would shake my head sometimes at myself. I could not imagine how frustrating that would have been to have to crawl in, under the bed, to drag my daughter out.
Needless to say, that didn’t endear me to my parents, and I am sure it created some tension between them and my grandparents. Apparently, I didn’t like change – especially when I was in a place that I loved to be.
And here I am, 55 years later, and no, I don’t hide under beds anymore, but there is still a part of me that doesn’t want to leave when I’m happy and comfortable. As I am now. Still, I’m preparing to move.
What my body tends to do is give expression to whatever it is that my logical mind isn’t interested in dealing with. Perhaps you’ve had this experience also. I get sick or injured. Almost every time. When I moved from Massachusetts to Montana in 2007 – I sold almost everything I owned, loaded up my PT Cruiser and was getting ready to go when I pulled my plantar fasciitis. Ugh. I couldn’t walk. I was in pain. And I wanted to go!
My friend came by, and she helped me finish packing up the car and got me on the road. I’m forever grateful to her for helping me start that journey with kindness and support.
And here I am again. This time it’s a flu-like ick. I’ve had the flu – it knocked me out for the three weeks. This isn’t quite as bad, but it’s not good! And still, I have to pack things up, load the car, and unload into my new home. I am delighted with my new place – and eager to be in my own space again. And yet. I have loved this place as well.
This is a perfect layout to explain those times when we know we “have to” but really “don’t wanna”. (I don’t pick the cards before the story, I lay them out after I tell it – and am always delighted to see my experience affirmed.)
First, we cling to what we have, we don’t want to let go because it’s secure and safe – even if we’re stuck. Have you felt like that? Knowing it’s time to move on but clinging to the security of the familiar?
Then, we worry. Our thoughts keep us up at night, wondering, fearing, catastrophizing what might/could happen. Even though we know that most of what we’re worrying at is not and will never be real, we still go for the full drama in our heads.
And finally, we move through the doorway of opportunity, each time we unclamp our fingers, let go of the fears, and take the first step through the doorway, we create a new world for ourselves.
I can’t cling on here – it’s not my home – and my friend would be most distressed to find me planted here. I know that feeling of having been gone for so long that you can’t wait to get home to your own space, your own land, your own bed. I want this place to be just perfect for her when she arrives.
And yes, I have some worries and concerns about this next step. It doesn’t keep me up at night – but I am walking in with both confidence and caution. It’s like the first time you walk a new trail – you don’t yet know what’s around that bend. A herd of deer, a flock of chickens, or a hungry mountain lion – all are possible, only a few are likely.
For me, I’ve been on a long (and yes, strange) trip toward creating the personal world that I want to live in. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea. But, I’m pretty sure it’s mine. And for that, I’m grateful.
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