I am currently 40,000 feet above the Gulf of Mexico. (Actually, I am already home, but I did write most of this during my flight which — by the way — was bumped up to first class by either the friendly blue-eyed lady at gate number 84, or the hottie from Aeromexico who claimed he needed to “check” my seat number. Thank you, whoever you are. The mixed nuts, elbow room and Cuba Libre made my day.)
Every time I travel home to the states, then return home to Mexico, it takes me a good week or so to reassimilate. Though not as shocking as it might be were my two homes longitudinally divided and thus separated by multiple time zones, there is no shortage of stimulus for my senses to sort, whether coming or going. It’s little wonder, really – culture shock, as a phenomenon. Can a non-winged species ever truly evolve to the point where traveling 1200 miles in 9 hours feels natural?
This return may prove particularly strange. Not only was my trip abrupt and unexpected, but I am returning home less a grandmother, filled with an ache to be closer to my family and having spent the whole week in a vulnerable state of contemplation about life in general. Nothing like losing your Mema to make you second guess your priorities.
Ahhh, priorities. As always – clear as mud.
It’s hard enough navigating the twists and turns of my mind just keeping up with my own interests. But knowing what’s best for the entire family? For the one in high school and the other in preschool? For the one learning to read and another about to enter the only-slightly-less-painful-to-watch-than-to-live-through middle school years? Whoa. It’s no joke. Any way I slice it, compromise is inevitable and sacrifice is a given.
Here are some of the questions that come up every time I return to the states…
Regardless of the answer to #8, the simple truth is that the answers are not always obvious. Not for any of us. My kids might end up well-adjusted, compassionate and less-consumptive having lived a few years where poverty is undeniable and simplicity is the norm. They could land great jobs one day by speaking two languages. Or, they could resent the fact that we’ve moved them all around, kept them from their friends and wish they’d lived their whole lives in the suburbs. They may forget most of their Spanish and end up working for Monsanto and buy their groceries from Wal-Mart just to rebel. (Surely not though, right?)
I suppose it’s okay that the answers regarding our future are clear as mud. If today offers so much that I can barely keep up, why in the world am I trying to handle tomorrow, too? I can almost hear the omnipotent presence that I imagined as a child — sitting just above the clouds on a magic Persian carpet — chuckling at my pathetic attempts at control, “YOU ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO KNOW THE ANSWERS, BETH. WHO ARE YOU KIDDING? CHILL OUT AND ENJOY YOUR LIFE, ALREADY. CAN’T YOU SEE I GOT THIS THING COVERED?”
Oh yea, that’s right. I forgot. Again. I’m not supposed to figure it all out. It’s a divine mystery, and a pretty freaking amazing one, at that. All I really need to do is be here now and enjoy the ride. Why is that so hard to remember?
I heard someone say something years ago that has helped me time and again. I tend to forget it, so I have it written down on little notes all over my house. Maybe one day it will sink in so deep that I will quit second guessing myself. Until then, it will remain tacked to my mirrors, above my computer and used as a dual-purpose bookmark…
do it as long as you can for as long as it feels good. the kids are alright. and look what they get for a mama- see how much you’ve grown personally and professionally in the last year and a half? that’s a bonus for everybody.
This post saved my sanity today. Thanks. And best luck being at peace and making your decisions.
“Because no matter how many times I travel, I am still dumbfounded and awestruck that humans have figured out how to make a 100 ton piece of metal fly through the air.” Right there with ya…every single time.
This is really beautiful, Beth, it touched me deeply. Thank you for putting your heart out there with every post!!!
I loved this one. I’m so happy you are where you are right now. And yet I still miss you terribly. Sending love.
It is true…He has it covered…but we get to participate.
For me, only Mission trumps Proximity.
second-guessing can drive you nuts. for me, it’s what/where can i honor God best, then it becomes a leap of faith… blessings to you, Beth…
I agree, Debbie. We were so clearly supposed to move here, and continue to receive one affirmation after another that we are here for reasons beyond our understanding. Love to you and yours <3
THE Dali LLAMA once said — ” the most important thing that we as humans can accomplish in LIFE- is to learn how to conquer one second of time with happiness and once we have acheived that — then the next second and the next until we understand that all we get in this life is one second at a time–and happiness is the most infectious energy that we can share with ourselves and those around us- it is a positive energy that always lights up the darkness —
FEAR & DOUBT– beware of these two– they will cancel all good things when offered the opportunity — when they arrive at your door– simply sweep them out with your broom and do not allow them to be part of your life- it takes steady persistence to deal with them — but once they get the idea that they can not find refuge in your world they will go away!
DIRECTION OF ENERGY- GOD has a plan — I believe that if your heart has good love and intentions for yourself and for those around you — then you are permitted to carry out your dream as you see it — if you dreamed of being somewhere and you finally arrive — then do not doubt that you are their becasue it is right or wrong — it is because you have been granted your wish for all things to come together for you to follow your dream by God– think back on all the loose ends that challenged everything in your world– now look again and see what has taken place and has come full circle for you to have the privilege of being exactly where you had hoped to be — embrace the idea that you are on your path and your spirit master is by your side to watchover you — you are loved by him and all that surround you — you are in devine hands and you have been granted your wishes — give thanks to all by conquering the second — with happiness and spread it all over yourself and those you care for — it is your ability to do so !! now is the time to really let go– get out of your own way — and let things happen without any resistance- no friction — flow— smile– create — be secure that these things are true and you are going to continue to be fine — life is exactly how you perceive it — so perceive it very well and you will find — “WHEREVER YOU GO — THERE YOU ARE “– realize– you have been blessed!! su amigo SR. ALAH CARIBBEAN
Wow. I don’t know who you are or from where you came, but your words are a like a beautiful song, una cancion escrita en mi corazon. Muchisimo gracias, amigo misterioso.
“You only need to see as far as your headlights.”