|I've been living out of backpacks and duffel bags for about 4 years.|
I have been on a pilgrimage in Spain and writing in this blog would have been a great distraction. I'll get more into that topic later.
Tomorrow, I leave Europe and head "home".
Many of the people I meet ask me where I'm "from" . I make up some story or other about growing up on the east coast of America and living the last 20 years or so out in the "wild, wild west". Then they ask me where "home" is and truth be told, it renders me speechless. I don't have an answer. I don't have a home. Like most of what I learn about my life, it is through the process of elimination the things that are NOT true for me... Maybe that's a bass-ackwards way of looking at things but that's how it is. So, I am learning where home is not. There is a quote by Robyn Davidson in her book Tracks, “And there are new kinds of nomads, not people who are at home everywhere, but who are at home nowhere. I was one of them ”.
Right now it is true that I am most at home nowhere.
One of the most important lessons I learned on this
pilgrimage, really took to heart and am working to integrate is that I can hold two contradictory ideas with compassion.
For example, while walking all day everyday, I found myself wanting to be in the company of other walkers while at the same time wanting the walkers who were walking with me to shut up and go away. Eventually, I found myself feeling very angry. And feeling angry just made it worse. Then a I met another pilgrim and we chatted briefly about this very thing one night in a tiny village over a soda while the rain outside came down in buckets. He reminded me that one of Buddhas guiding principles was that in our humanness, we can want two opposing things at the same time and not suffer. We have all heard the cliche, "Pain is a part of life, suffering is optional". He reminded me that I can hold two contradictory ideas AND have compassion. What a relief!
So as I fly out of Amsterdam tomorrow I'll be noticing what it's like to want to live nowhere while wanting a home somewhere.
Thanks for reading.