All this meditating, resting, and breathing has gotten me to thinking about things…and this, in short, is why we often don’t slow down! When we get quiet, we start telling ourselves the pesky truth, and sometimes that means making changes. Big changes.
Recently, as I think I mentioned, hubby and I started talking about where we might want to live. I’ve lived in Houston for 30 years, and he’s been here even longer, so these thoughts cause us to sit up straight and perk up our ears. Sometimes he backpedals — “Maybe we could just leave Houston during the summer” — but then we realize that a) summer is lasting longer and longer here, and b) the ties that held us here are gone. Joe and Sarah, my stepkids, don’t live here anymore. Henry’s folks are gone. He still has a sister here, but we don’t see her that often, either. Plus, we do have the freedom to travel and visit.
“Why would you want to stay?” I ask. It’s a fair question. The answer could be, “We like the house and the neighborhood. We have our regular restaurants that we enjoy. Rice University is nearby, and they have a lot of fun things to do.” The real answer, though, is “inertia.” That doesn’t sound like a good reason to me!
Problem is, life is unpredictable. Why spend it in a place that no longer works? Sure, we have both loved Houston, but more and more we gravitate toward mountains. And Henry likes the water, though I can take it or leave it. We have traveled enough to discover that we don’t want to live anymore in a flat terrain where an evening stroll to the wine bar makes us sweaty and stinky.
We have scheduled a trip to Washington State in December. First, it’s a trip to celebrate my birthday. Second, we want to see the area in a less-attractive time to see if we would still like it. It will be colder, rainier, and darker. We picked Port Townsend because the town seems to fill the bill for what we’re looking for: the right terrain, an emphasis on local and organic food, and a plethora of artists and writers to hang out with.
Since we’re “interviewing” Port Townsend, I want to meet as many people as possible. It’s a small town, so it’s important to find people that we wouldn’t mind hanging around. I Googled the local yoga studios to see if anything was going on. Turns out that one of my favorite yoga teachers, Angela Farmer, is doing a workshop the weekend of my birthday. She runs many of her trainings in Greece, but is visiting little ol’ Port Townsend on the first weekend that I’ll be there.
Here I am, on the cusp of menopause, on the eve of a new year of my life, and in the process of making a big decision, now with the opportunity to work with someone who has a way of pulling the deepest truths out of her students. And what better way to get to know some of the locals than to spend time in such an intimate environment?
It was a goosebump moment. You know them, right? I used to always affirm that “I am always in the right place at the right time, successfully engaged in the right activity.” But in a goosebump moment, I really BELIEVE it.
Goosebump moments can remind us that maybe something else is at work in our lives besides our mundane, mental existence. I am giddy. I am scared. Like many women, I have feared my own power for too long, so I hesitate. I remind myself of all the logical reasons not to do the workshop. Then, I stop, I breathe — and I write the check. I want to honor all the goosebump moments of my life and to jump in full-out. Maybe all that pesky stillness is not only opening me to change, but giving me the courage to go through with it.
You go girl! I’m looking ahead to the future as well. I don’t want to give up a home base in St. Louis, but I would love to own a place in France for frequent visits and as a jumping off point for travel. I’m still “interviewing” different towns in that country also. It sounds like karma is pointing you northwest. I love that corner of the country, although I don’t think I could survive that much gray in the winter. Keep us posted.
Good for you! Those goosebumps are definitely a message! Stop by my blog today – I’m giving you an award http://www.thewritingreader.com/blog/2011/09/29/its-a-double-play/
Years ago my father, mother, and I traveled to Florida on vacation. We went to a restaurant after having spent the day being tourists and who did we run into but his step brother that he hadn’t seen in years. Neither knew the other was going on vacation. Goose bump moment. It rekindled their relationship and was a memory my father would chuckle over when he’d get in a story-telling mood. Love your blog. I’ll be back for more. 😀 Btw, lived in Baytown for four years, years ago. Loved it, but had to move on too.