On the “weekends” during quarantine, after the kids are in bed we often have a little Facetime party with two other couples. Day 83 marked a milestone because we had an evening of grilling with those Facetime friends. After nearly three months, we all met in person.
It was cacophonous to say the least. The kids were so excited to have visitors that they were still talking about the fun today.
To celebrate the occasion I stayed up late talking and eating and drinking, forgetting to take any photos and forgoing (for the very first time in 83 days) my evening writing.
The lessons of this “lost” time appear sporadically, sometimes all at once, then slowly one by one. One thing quarantine revealed is that I am actually a bit more of an introvert than I ever believed. It turns out that I do recharge in quiet moments alone– as much as I do in the presence of other people.
In this time my hostess skills have gotten a little rusty, but somehow last night I didn’t feel the old pressure to be perfect. Instead, just having a home to welcome friends into was perfect enough.
There are times in life when we head down a road thinking we’re going on an adventure. Purposely embarking on something that will enlighten us or teach us something. The intention to add some new skill or perspective to the life we already have.
But it can happen that one adventure leads to another. Then an opportunity follows, then something else and before we know it we’re leap frogging our way across the universe, one exciting experience at a time, far, far away from anything familiar.
Suddenly we look back and realize that we are lightyears away from that old life. That places we expected to be stops on the journey were whole destinations. And there we are just hanging out there in space, kind of swinging around, drifting, holding on to the end of this path we followed. I felt like I spent a long time out there, in the dark, nothing recognizable, no way to go back.
Slowly though, as we stop obsessing about how we got out there, and start marveling at the trip itself, our vision comes back. We aren’t actually stuck out in space 180 degrees in the wrong direction. No, as we hang there, we begin to take shape. Enhanced by what we’ve seen and experienced, having given ourselves a little weight, a little magnetism, that path starts to curve back around to a self that we recognize, to the true heart of who we always were.
We bring those adventures with us. But it isn’t what we thought–we aren’t adding to a life we already had, we’re creating the life we want, we are adding to the self we’ve been.
The overriding take away of this time continues to be this idea of home. That home is more revealed to us than it is invented. More accepted than it is found. That it emerges more than it is built. Because like I said before, home is you.
After these far-off adventures, stints away, periods of upheaval, disappointments, marriage, pregnancy, career changes, moves, intensive yearning and learning- The magnet of who we are brings us back– not to a brick and mortar home, not to a specific place or a job or a relationship. No, we come back to us, to ourselves. And just like an old friend, it doesn’t matter how long we’ve been away.