it’s been many, many years since i sat in my old bedroom in nashville and understood that it was time to leave. i’m learning all sorts of theories in my classes to explain human behavior and i can postulate for days about why i’ve made the decisions i have up until this point but ultimately it doesn’t matter to me. it doesn’t matter because i am here and i am alive and all of the pain of the last 6 years has led to this year, the best year.
when you’re running away from something (or someone, in my case), your focus is on the immediacy of the situation. the immediacy of your need to keep moving lest you stand still and suddenly start to feel the ferocity of your pain in its fullness. in those tense moments of hurried decision-making, it’s hard to know that as much as you are running from something, you are also running to something.
it took me 6 years to figure out exactly what that was. and when i say i figured it out, i mean i crossed paths with people who changed my previous ideas about the world and my role in the world.
if i had known then, laying on the floor of my bedroom in nashville making mental lists about what to pack and what to trash, that i would end up here, in this moment, i wouldn’t have been so distressed. but if distress is what it takes to keep moving, i’m all for it.
it still hurts to remember driving away from that apartment, shared with so many dear friends over the years. but i was running to something, even then, years before i would arrive here.
it seems to me that when you are going about your life it becomes impossible not to end up missing a whole lot of people all of the time. my lifelines are thousands of miles long, stretching in every direction.
like veins, they are throbbing.
sometimes that throbbing is an acute pain, a reminder that i am always far away, that home is not so much a place as it is a person, my people. in that way, i will never be home. but what in life is static, after all? we run from things and to things all day long and we are full of sticky surfaces, so we are always picking up strays.
just when i think i am at my limit, i meet some glorious soul that steals my heart and a new lifeline grows in that instant. i feel myself pulled in every direction, and i can’t be static lest i am prepared to feel that ferocious pain in its fullness.
it’s hard to be where you are, to accept the limitations of your human skin, to let it hold you in even when you feel like expanding in every direction so as to bring all of your history inside of you, with you everywhere. but my skin is holding me in tightly, so i can still fit through subway doors and airplane doors and car doors and my bedroom door in whatever city i currently call my own.
i can’t keep you all with me. i can’t feel all of the pain of our thousands of goodbyes in every moment. i can’t stand still.
and so i miss you all, as you run to and from things all day long at the other end of my lifelines, my veins. those throbbing veins remind me that home is each of you.