Notes from the road - edition 19: Change
I have a tattoo down my left ribcage. Actually, I have three. Three concentric circles, each with a symbol inside. One of these symbols is a wave. It represents the ocean, the place where I feel most happy and at ease. It also represents change. The ocean is in an ever-changing state, never still, never the same. I think it acts as a nice metaphor for life, which is why I agreed, completely sober, to have a surly Russian man inscribe it into my body with needles and ink.
Change comes upon us all at one stage or another. I went from solo travelling Sri Lanka for three weeks, completely alone with my thoughts and emotions, to being surrounded by an incredible family of humans for four weeks in India while I pushed my mind and body to limits that had never crossed my radar.
When the course finished, we were five. Then Nancy left and we were four. Megan departed and we were three. On Wednesday Caroline left and we became two. Just Lu and I remain, with plans to head north to Dharamshala. To cooler climbs and new scenery, although the Indian transport system works constantly to thwart our plans.
Having gone through this roller coaster period of change, I now find myself at a bit of a crossroads.
As much as I despise being dependent on money, I’m at a stage where I have to be a bit cautious with what I do. Next month I’ll get my tax return, which will give me a nice little boost and should see me to my next destination – Europe.
But that’s not for another three weeks, and I’m not the kind of person who does well simply sitting on their hands and waiting for life to happen. I’m far happier when chasing down life and grabbing it with both hands. I’m a doer and a shaker, not a sitter and a waiter.
That said, one of the biggest lessons learned while completing my Yoga Teacher Training was that of patience. That good things take time, and to let them happen at their own pace, or else risk robbing them of their inherent beauty.
And such is my impasse. I hate waiting, but I must wait. I’m getting better at being patient, but the idea of sitting on my hands for three weeks is not at all appealing.
The above may have sounded rather whingy and whiny. A bit woe-is-me. But the power of regular journaling has helped me realise something about my little predicament - it’s a wonderful opportunity.
Often, we don’t get the chance to take life slow and implement things we’ve learned and build positive habits. I now face a worst-case scenario where I have three weeks to do nothing but implement. Implement daily habits and routines that I’ve always wanted to try. Implement new thought patterns, physical patterns, work patterns. Just implement.
And at the end of those three weeks, I’ll have built a few new positive habits, I’ll be itching and rearing to travel and do things again, a feeling I’ve lacked a bit since Sri Lanka, and I’ll be able to reunite with a few other movers and shakers on our way to Europe.
The moral of the story, kids, is that the universe listens, and will often test your conviction. I’ve always felt with things like my YTTC that it’d be great to have time afterwards to reflect and implement. I didn’t recognise it at first, but the universe has given me that time.
The universe listens before it speaks. Have the courtesy to listen back.
Didn’t pick up the camera much again this week. I did have some fun shooting Caroline in her Sari on the rooftop of our hostel though. Some snaps, below.
Until next week, happy voyaging!