I've been slowed down by illness this week, missing work on Thursday and Friday. I had a very few minutes here and there to do a couple of loads of laundry and a little tidying up after my sick self -- certainly not the progress I have wanted to make.
Today, I still am not back full steam, but I'm at the point of MAKING myself move out of necessity. I had to get out to the pharmacy today to get my insulin refilled because they will be closed on Monday and I'll need my new supplies before then.
However, I've made some huge, major progress today, too. I went through four boxes that have been stacked in the corner of my kitchen since I moved in two years ago. These were boxes that my friends packed for me at my old house, so I wasn't sure what I would find once I got into them.
Amazingly, I found myself.
I found the self who, on a day's notice, picked up and moved to New York for two months on a fellowship while I was in graduate school. I found the photos I took there; the work I did while at United Media Enterprises. Good stuff. Stuff I am still proud of 25 years later. OMG, did I just write 25 years??? OMG!
I found photos from a trip to Florida to go deep-sea fishing in 1997. Another memorable trip on the Emerald Coast -- not just because of the seasickness while we were out on the boat, but the incredible restorative powers of the white sand and blue-green water. Incredible.
And I found photos from the most incredible trip I ever took, to Switzerland, in 1997. I cannot begin to describe any part of it -- the beauty, the scenery, the society and culture. I could not do it justice in a blog post.
Most of all, I would be ill equipped to describe a deep personal change that took place one night during that trip. Briefly, I had gone out one night after our tour of the day was finished, just to walk and take in more of the city. I tend to wander alone when I travel because I gain so much from it.
I stopped at a sidewalk cafe for a "Coke Light" so I could watch the people and just enjoy the night. One of my traveling companions happened to find me there a few minutes later -- an older man who was on the trip recording a radio program.
He stopped to visit with me and we had a profound conversation -- rather, he talked and I listened. He said he had been observing various people on the trip, me included, and wondered what the burden was that I was carrying around with me. He said that although we had only know each other for the few days we were on the trip, he sensed great potential that was being held back by an unresolved sorrow.
I started to laugh it off as some conversation starter -- not quite a pickup line, not quite the hocus-pocus of a fortune teller. But he persisted, saying that one of his gifts was discernment, a gift he had from being the seventh son of a seventh son.
It might still have been idle conversation, but it unlocked a truth in me that I had been suppressing. Family concerns had kept me from going as far as I might have, even with these occasional mountaintop moments. In fact, it was just a matter of weeks after this trip that my brother died and my mother began her final journey over the next couple of years.
Today's rediscovery of those bits and pieces of my past also hammer home to me that I may have had unfinished business a couple of years ago when I moved back to my hometown, but that is long finished and it is time for me to move on to my own next chapter.
Recently my boss, in anger, told me that my opinion on a matter wasn't welcome, and if I didn't like it, I didn't have to be here.
Truer words were never spoken. It's time for me not to be here.