Your purpose is…to awaken. To discover and nurture who you truly are…and to guide yourself back home when you lose your way.Kris Carr
There’s no place like it
I have a long and firmly established love for being home. It’s a common theme in L.M. Montgomery books (Anne of Green Gables, et al). That may be part of it. Home is prominent in Montgomery’s real-life journals, too. As an orphan, raised by unfriendly, uncompromising grandparents, finally becoming mistress of her own home was a crowning joy for Montgomery.
Despite a much friendlier, and more happily crowded, childhood than hers, I had a similar happiness the first year I found myself in charge of my own kitchen, comfy chair, and remote control. I LOVE IT HERE. I regularly respond to planned events with confusion, i.e., “Why do people plan things so often? Don’t we work hard all day to pay for our homes so we can be in them?”
I’m not going to belabor this because I know I don’t speak for all of us. Some people go crazy with too little going. Some people have difficult homes or no home at all right now, and they certainly can’t relate, but for my part: I dreamed of this.
It’s better than the rest
A much more universal application of my love for home comes from the quote at the top and the memory of a random bad day long ago when my friend Peter taught me a mindfulness trick before I even knew the word. He said there’s a place in our minds that’s all ours. We can furnish it with everything we know for sure, everything we love, all that makes us happy; and we can go there any time we want. It makes the bleck around us less powerful, at least over our minds and emotions.
I remember this conversation so well because it changed my life and because I wrote it down. I do that with aha moments, and lately I do it very, very intentionally.
It’s filled with things you love
The last couple years, For most of my life, I’ve been a little angsty. If you’ve read the blog over the years, you know I go around the same mountains all the time. In adulthood, it’s mostly the tension between work and art or paying your bills but with purpose.
The last couple years, I tried to work out the angst via journaling. I mean, I’ve journaled all my life, but in handwritten pages when the mood struck. Starting in 2018, I journaled online every day, at least a few sentences. I think I was trying to find patterns maybe? What was going on that led to the angst or what good threads ran through it all that I tended to miss in my emotional swirling.
When January 2020 hit, I decided this wouldn’t work anymore. It wasn’t helping me to keep repeating the problem.
It’s where the breakthroughs live
Earlier in the pandemic, my sister sent me a video about Enneagram 4’s. It’s a personality framework that defines me as an “individualist” who tends to get melancholy and fixate on the thing I do not have. The video reminded me the antidote to these is to do ordinary things like wash the dishes (which keeps me from living in my feelings so much—it works every time) and the spiritual practice of gratitude, which helps me focus on the wonderful in my life.
What I realized as I feverishly captured this advice in my journal and felt the earth shake with how centering it was for me, is that I had already done that about one year ago when this Enneagram tendency/solution combo came at me via some podcast or something. It changed my life then, too.
This is ridiculous, I thought. What good is a breakthrough if it doesn’t stay with me? Right? So this time, I captured it for good in that online place I’ve been cultivating with things like this. I titled it, “Angsty? Try this.” A manifesto to bring me home and back to happiness. I’ve got other breakthroughs there, too, and I visit that baby a LOT.
I know this physical blurring of the weekdays and the weekends isn’t for everyone. I’ve definitely gone a little crazy myself at times, but I was kinda already there. I started this year with PLANS. I had a vision for everything I would accomplish, everything that would change for me that I’ve been working toward for what feels like forever, and coronapocalypse really brought a screeching halt to the feeling that anything (good) is possible.
When it feels like that, I remember how many times I wanted to “just stay home” and couldn’t, and I focus on the more ethereal home, the one in my mind that reminds me who I am, what I want, and how to shake off my own particular demons. They have no place here. This is home.