Part of the purpose of this road trip, a large part actually, is to afford time to consider the next steps. Having rocked my world by selling the family home—with no plan for where to go, no less—I find myself at crossroads. Recently my daughter and her family and I decided to find property together and to also to include her husband’s father and wife. Five years ago I could not have imagined this plan…in fact was quite resistant. But time and circumstances change perspectives and so this life journey takes a dogleg.
Depending on what sort of property we find, I will need to decide on housing. Maybe there will be a ready place for me but I may have the “opportunity” to create a living space. What might I want? What do I need? Where will I hang my swing? And there is my love of hospitality, of the large gatherings around a central table. Will there be room for the table, I wonder? There needs to be room for the table.
And so I ponder needs versus wants (a concept I drilled into my children as they grew) and also costs. There is no blank check for this. Friends have suggested I must be feeling a tremendous relief, having accomplished the move from the old place. I expect that will come and I do feel lighter, but the task ahead—of weighing pros and cons and making choices for the foreseeable future—whew!
I’m pleased to realize that I yearn for simpler. I am not looking back grieving for my previous lifestyle. I very much want to create a way forward that softens my impact on the earth and increases my impact as a grandmother and friend seeking a graceful path in our world. Much of what we are fed through social media and the marketplace tries to stir our desires and wants for more. More stuff, more youth, more money, more food, more everything…it’s one of the reasons I took myself off of Facebook so many years ago. I felt myself becoming overwhelmed and affected by the machine manufacturing false desires.
So, I drive and think and watch and sift. And try to lean toward inclusiveness and openness and vulnerability.