I am afraid of many, many things. Though as I get older and I live through more of them, I realize there isn't so much to be afraid of. Uncertainty, though, still has its own brand of terror for me. And yet I am beginning a year of it-- a year without a job or a home of my own or a plan or health insurance-- but in the moments when I stop to think about what's ahead of me or imagine what I can't picture or wonder how irresponsible I have become, I'm reminded that this uncertainty is something that I've been dreaming about since I can remember. And at least part of me felt brave enough to take the proverbial leap. So I'm leaping and, it seems, coming back to this blog to write all about it.
Though it has been more than three years since I last wrote here, all of these posts and stories are of course still just sitting patiently in inter-space and it only seemed fair that I come back and, something. What is it about crossroads, transitions, beginnings, that inspire us to reflect, and reflect in public no less? I don't have the answer. But I know that I left my job in June, my apartment, uprooted my roots, and in three days I'll leave Brooklyn, all to begin a year of new beginnings without a certain end in place or even an exact destination.
For a month at least I'll be at a place called the Himalayan Institute, without caffeine, but with morning meditation, yoga, service, and hiking trails blanketed in morning fog, apparently.
And that from there I'll go places like Vermont and New Mexico, Oregon and South Carolina and that I'll finish writing a book, I hope, that starts like this...
He had been driving since Charleston, West Virginia and the back of his thighs were numb. Between his hands on the wheel and his right foot on the gas, his body floated invisible and weightless and the sun rose over corn fields and low mountains on either side of him. He’d lived everywhere but the two-lane thruways of New England still filled him with the nostalgia of other people’s histories.
And I will finally learn to stand on my head, because I'll stop being terrified of upside-down. And I'll write about it here. And maybe you'll check in with me.
Because I'm not going back to school tomorrow, and that feels impossible and free and uncertain and sad and inspired, and some of the leaves are blowing off of the trees, and even turning red in southern Vermont, but I'm not going back to school.