I’ve been assembling this blog post since the airport in Missouri… so it has bits and pieces of exhaustion, change and anyway.. this is how my adventure has been thus far:
Let me tell you, I began this journey with one hour of sleep. I spent the night giggling with a good friend and before we knew it, it was 12:30… and then I began unpacking and repacking the things left in my car AND doing laundry…. AND generally being a badass.
I had more “left-overs” in my car than I was anticipating and ended up having to dump off more of my stuff which I left in my car… maybe the people who repo it will donate to charity… or maybe they themselves will need more stuff.
Anyway, after my hour nap, I still had stuff all over the floor that I needed to fit into my tiny suitcase or over stuffed carry-on. I regrettably threw away more stuff, mainly cold weather gear since it takes up too much space and weighs the most.
I quickly shrugged it off and comforted myself with these words, “You’ll get even better stuff when you need it.”
My friend then woke up and we left for the airport with bloodshot eyes and still lots of light-hearted laughter. We stopped off at a Starbucks on the way (the same parking lot and same space in which my car went kaput last night)… I think our light-heartedness inspired another patron as he offered to pay for our food and beverages…. My friend said, “See, it’s another sign that you are on the right path… you are getting a good start.”
I became a little dismayed at the airport. I was disheveled, sleepy and incredibly disorganized with shoes and scarves falling everywhere all while I tried to balance an over-stuffed suitcase, coffee and a bottle of water. Airport personnel apparently picked up on my disorganized exhaustion and tried to “help” by sending me all over the place to get to the quickest line, all while I tried to balance too much stuff and was too tired to know the difference between up and down…. let alone read signs or have a coherent or productive dialogue.
Finally, I arrived at the right line. My bag was 55 pounds…. five pounds over the limit. I tried to explain why, “This is EVERYTHING that I own… I don’t have enough money to pay 50 dollars… it’s just five pounds.” The woman had no sympathy and I was instructed to open my bag and take stuff out until it was five pounds lighter. I asked if I could have a plastic bag for what I took out and she said they were not allowed to give out bags…. oooookay. More stuff had to hit the trash can.. including my favorite shoes. I held on to a few things… but found it was far too inconvenient spending my day trying to keep track of that stuff. The woman I dealt with obviously didn’t get my plight and stood annoyed shooting angry glances in my direction for holding up her line.
Luckily, I made a friend. Brian. He was in line behind me and we chatted for a while about why I am doing what I am… and about his new grandson that he just finished visiting with. We had an instant rapport and understanding and I felt quite comfortable in his presence… safe. As soon as I finished he was waiting for me. He served as my guide and I followed him to all of the required stops along the way. He took my heavy carry on and said, “Let’s sit together on the plane.”
We did sit together… he saved me a seat. He told me all about his family and I told him some about what has made me into who I am today.
He sat with me in the terminal as I had to AGAIN reorganize my carryon and shift things around to make room for what I couldn’t throw away and what I had to part with. I like that he didn’t think I was weird….
I fell asleep on and off on the plane and when I sat up for landing… he gave me a warm glance and gently rubbed my arm like a father would do as he said, “You’re okay… you’re gonna do great…” and then he hugged me.
I walked him to baggage claim and he gave me twenty bucks for lunch… he hugged me and said, “I would wish you luck, but someone like you doesn’t need it.” Followed by a warm smile and “It was nice meeting you… I’m happy that I got to be a part of this journey…I can’t wait to hear all about your adventures and I have a feeling we will meet again someday..”
I arrived in Minnesota wishing I hadn’t thrown away my flip-flops (Trust me, I wouldn’t have unless I really didn’t have space to carry them)… it’s actually kind of warm here. Anyway, I felt nervous as I walked through the terminal to begin a big “blind date” of sorts with three people.
I rushed through the terminal and found the newest piece of my extended family standing there with a sign, “Welcome Home Currie!” along with a purple star balloon (my favorite color) Oh EM Gee!… I had been visioning them standing exactly like that since I bought my plane ticket. We stood there and hugged… each a little nervous and really excited too.
We waited for my suitcase.. but it never arrived. My bag did not arrive with me. I learned a valuable lesson through that. Just the night before I had been telling my friend about my decision to thoroughly downsize and just be light and non-attached through this adventure and how I still felt like I had too much and that I resented the size of my suitcase… well, the Universe supported that thought… and lost the excess weight for me. (*Note to self- PLEASE watch your thoughts).
The funny thing is that I didn’t care much about my stuff. I honestly just laughed about how fitting that was for my journey. My new tribe and I giggled to the car and drove off to eat something. Really, that is SO NOT like the person I used to know as me… I used to need control at all times… I needed my stuff to feel at home… now, it just doesn’t matter that much to me…. where ever I am and however I am, I am home. I am not my body… I am not my possessions… I am not my circumstances. I am always home.
I’ve never been so warmly and easily accepted by others… This family is amazing.
This post is getting long, so I guess I will write about them on another day…
I will say this, my luggage was delivered to my new home the next day. I now own 2 pairs of shoes… somehow three pairs of Toms disappeared (that I did not consciously toss). I have 3 half pairs of assorted colored flip flops and a half pair of black and white super awesome Toms… AND I had to discard my favorite pair of shoes… and somehow my favorite coat got lost as well as my tooth-brush charger…. it’s kind of funny. I mean, I tried to be organized. I spent days downsizing my stuff, organizing, cleaning my car, making piles, packing strategically and in the end… it didn’t really mean anything. I can only laugh. I’m sure when it gets really warm I will miss my flip flops… but all I can do is laugh. I am the definition of airy- organizing has never really been my thing… Even when I try really really hard, it just doesn’t work. In the end I have learned I am not my belongings, I am not my packing style, I am not my surroundings. Even though I do miss my things, I’ve never been happier… It’s been a long time since I’ve laughed so hard and so regularly. I simply am. I am me. I am my home.