Needing to be

29 Aug

I am sure many of you are familiar with the book and now movie Eat, Pray, Love.  In the real-life story a 30 something woman finds herself in transition… unglued, unlocked… and makes a choice to spend a year traveling.  3 months in Italy… Eat.  3 months in an ashram in India… Pray.  And 3 months in Bali… ultimately love.  Before I made the choice to embark on my journey in Europe, I remember an experience I had.  It was in the bathroom of the mostly empty home where I was house sitting in a suburb of New Orleans called Metairie.  In full transition form, I was living there lightly.  The house was empty and for sale. I had set up an inflatable mattress in the bedroom.  My friend and Reiki teacher, Elizabeth Ohmer Pellegrin, who was sharing the space for her Reiki practice had thankfully set up a futon and coffee table in the main room.  Ah, a little comfort of home in the sparseness of it all.  Things were coming to a close at the house and a transition ensued in my world.  The house was under contract, all of my personal belongings fit into a storage unit the size of a closet, and my 1996 Ford Taurus, which had given me 5 good years, was about to collapse.  What am I going to do?  I looked in the mirror in the bathroom… and what I heard was… Eat, Pray, Love…. I smiled a little to myself… taking some comfort in the possibility of a journey.  And that I might deserve to have such an adventure.  I was in need of one.

But where, for now, Ms. Gilbert and I depart ways was she had a plan… a framework for her journey… and at least,I think, an advance on the book she was writing.  And so it seemed, as I canceled my return flight to the states in June and rescheduled it for May of 2012… I was excited but also in a state of the unknown.  Unknown of where I would go and what I would do and unknown how I would finance my adventure…  Now I have some practice and power with this state of being living the mischievous life that I have led in New Orleans… and then of course post-Katrina.  A friend once told me that I am like a cat… I always land on my feet.  But jumping and leaping all of the time can get… exhausting.  It’s that word again… balance.  It seems, here in my state of flux I am craving it.

So I had a little walk today with Marijke, my friend and host in the Netherlands and she asked me… what is your wish?  What is you wish for your time in Europe?  And in a way, the conversation was a surprise for me.  I suppose I was thinking that in going with the flow I would have to surrender to the will of the way…  and in the way, no one asked me about my wish. That somehow I did not have a choice.   Hmmm, interesting question, I thought…  I have to admit, a few weeks into my visit in the Netherlands… I have a lack of focus and what seems to be a handful of possiblibilities for “what’s next” depending on this, depending on that… My “dependence on” has me hypnotized by my need… and less in the here and now.  But she offered, I could consider my wish… and have that as my intention.  For example, she offered, Ms. Gilbert and Eat, Pray, Love… the book that she happens to be currently reading… started out with an intention… of where she would be for each period of her journey.  She offered that as something to consider.  What is my intention?  What would I like this year to look like… with off course leaving room for flexibility and shifting and unexpected opportunities.  But a nice idea nonetheless!

And somewhere in this I find that I need room to be… where I am… and the idea of immediately moving here, then moving there… no maybe there… is a little unnerving.  What would I like?

I don’t know the answer to that question yet.  But I will spend some time chanting about it and sending Reiki.  How does one walk that path… of going with the flow, listening to and being guided by a higher wisdom… but still feeling and staying grounded along the way and being connected to our own wants and desires.  Hmmm… I have explored this road before.  But now, in Europe, in Alkmaar, the volume seems to be turned up a little higher.  It’s so nice to have someone who is kind enough to ask the questions… on a lovely stroll through the maze of paths near her home.

Tonight, friends of Marijke’s are coming to her home to join us for a little socializing and some Reiki.  And for me… it’s hard to just be with all these questions running through my head!  Alas, maybe I’ll start with exploring and asking… what do I want… what is my wish?  And explore the spirit of the intent for my journey.

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