To Regret or Not To Regret?

One week from this moment I will be boarding a plane to Thailand. Well, no, not true-I’ll be boarding a plane to LAX, then to Hong Kong, THEN and only then will I be getting on a plane to Thailand. But you know what I mean.

People keep asking me what I’m going to miss most. Ya know, I have no idea—as much as I love my job, my community, my friends, my trails and my life here in Southern Oregon I think I’m ready to discover something really new and most definitely exciting. I’ve lived a lot of my life not wanting to miss out on anything. Being too afraid to leave and really follow what I’ve dreamed of doing, what I have discovered is that by leaving, or by not leaving I miss out on a whole lot more.

I’m ready. I’m scared. But being excited is outweighing everything.

“You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land, there is no other life but this.” Henry David Thoreau

I should be writing as much as possible. I should be telling the world about all the amazing thoughts and travel ideas I have for this upcoming adventure to Thailand. But in reality, right now I am trying so hard to live ‘right now’. I am doing what I want. I’m going out for drinks mid-week to be with my friends as much as I can. I’m eating out (I never eat out,) I’m cuddling up on the couch with my roommates to watch a movie because who knows the next time I’ll be able to do that is?

I’m running. I ran for 2 hours through the woods with my friend on Sunday. We ran and talked about our lives. We didn’t talk about two weeks from now, not about 4 months from now when she leaves for South America, we talked about life and where we are. NOW. Now is enough right now. I ran again for 2 hours on Monday, why? Because I could, because I had time, and I had strength in my legs, because the woods were there calling my name.

Monday’s run was alone. I needed to see if I could do it on my own without the encouragement and the footprints of my friend to follow.  I did it, alone. I was there, at that moment loving on the mountains, wondering what the mountains of Thailand were going to be like—and then I dragged myself back to Ashland and reminded myself to just BE HERE. I am here for two more weeks, and I’m going to BE HERE for two more weeks; mind, body, and soul.

 

And then, only then am I off.

Connections

As I loaded onto a plane the size that Ron White would describe as a pack of chewing gum, we left Oregon, our nose set for east.  I said goodbye to the mountains and was looking forward to greeting Lake Michigan and it’s cool breeze that it always has to offer. Touching down in Grand Rapids I was excited to go ‘home’, every asked me if that’s where I was going, home. This is a foreign term for me, was Michigan home? Was South West Michigan home?

My dad, since I was a kid, has always called me his Child of the Planet, I was eager to travel, always hungry to see and do and learn more. So I never learned to be at home anywhere. Where are you from? Is a question that gets blank stares from both my brother and me. This isn’t a bad thing, I wouldn’t change my nomadic childhood for anything. Not only my childhood, I’ve continued that lifestyle into my adulthood.

My trip’s purpose was to be a bridesmaid for my friend in her wedding, it just happened to be a month before I’m leaving for SE Asia, perfect timing to catch up with everyone back in Michigan. I left Oregon excited to see Michigan, I was in Michigan for a week and didn’t dream of Oregon once, didn’t think about the mountains, the trees or the crazy hippies that dance around the courtyard at the Co-op. I was completely in Michigan.

Discovering my lack of connection to Oregon was disturbing. I always figured I would love the west coast and never want to leave. Realizing that I don’t think I could move back to Michigan was also disturbing. I’m realizing as I grow up that I don’t know where I belong, I’m like that kid that eats lunch in the bathroom—no where else to go. I guess Thailand is my bathroom? (okay, bad analogy…but you get it, right?)

I’ve never felt at home, so I just keep moving in search for that connection with some place. I’ve got the wanderlust, we know that, but is it such a bad thing? I’m moving on from Oregon, maybe I’ll return, maybe I’ll leave it behind forever.

I’ve moved on Michigan for the time being, I love the lake, I love the people, but the land is flat and love high elevation. For now I guess I’m just super excited about this adventure afoot. Oh yeah, I also bought my plane ticket yesterday, so this is REALLY happening!!!!!

 

Let's get real, this is why I actually came to Michigan

Let’s get real, this is why I actually came to Michigan