Seeking Silence

Crickets. It’s been quiet here lately. Silent, actually.

There’s going to be no apologies. No excuses for abandoning you readers here without words for so long.

I have missed you, but I’m actually not sorry. You see, I left you on purpose.

No, I didn’t quit my blog. I didn’t run out of words after writing a whole year’s worth of blog posts in the small month of February.

My silence has been intentional. I needed to make space to think. To quiet down, lower the volume and turn some things off. In my ongoing quest to find home, I realized I had settle to inside before I could ever even think about the scary idea of physically settling down.

I stopped looking for answers and went looking for some silence. It was an effort – a little like climbing a tall mountain– but a journey that I couldn’t bring you on.

It hasn’t all been quiet. I’ve discovered lots of sounds in the silence like birds chirping, burning matchsticks crackling and the sound my hammock makes when it blows in the breeze. Most importantly, I’ve discovered what it sounds like to listen to myself breathe.

And now I’m ready to roll again. To write again. To let the band play while I dance toward home in my sparkling ruby slippers. To re-embark on my quest for home and to invite you along.

I may stop for a little more silence here and there, just to make sure I’m still breathing and grateful. But don’t be worried, I’ll always come back. I’m here for good, remember.

And speaking of good and grateful, I’m glad you’re still here, that you stuck it out through my silence.

What have you been doing with all this quiet time?

At Home in the Questions

Yesterday was not only Chinese New Year, it was also the one month anniversary of my return to the United States. Yes, for all you people who didn’t believe I could do it, I went 30 days with getting on a single airplane. I haven’t left the country. In fact, I haven’t even left the state of Florida.

I was going to celebrate this accomplishment by rewarding myself with a plane ticket to go somewhere, but I decided to do something that truly surprised me. I decided to hang up my hammock and stay in the sunshine state a little bit longer.

Before you jump to conclusions, I’m not moving here (or anywhere) permanently at the moment, and I have no plans for changing my twitter handle to @stayathomezito anytime soon. I just didn’t feel ready to pack my suitcase yet, so I gave myself permission to be where I’m at.

I mentioned the other day that the goal I set during first New Years was to define this year what “Home” means for me.  As I spent time this weekend thinking about that goal in light of my second chance new years, an obvious thing occurred to me:

I  miss a lot of amazing moments in the present while I’m obsessing about where my future is going to land me.

I’ve been so eager to figure out where is next, that my first weeks here I’ve forgotten to enjoy the beauty of the home I already have here and now. It is much more common to  get caught up in a struggle with the questions, rather than living life to the fullest in the midst of the unknown.

Last week something finally changed. I decided to start learning to love living where I’m at for now, rather than fixating on my escape plan. And you know what, I’ve been surprised by how much fun it has been to go slow and breathe deeply.

Whatever unknown future you’re wrestling this week, don’t forget to be still and marvel at the beauty of the present.