Monthly Archives: May 2012

Roots & Wings

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My winter in Denver was lonely, cold, and life-changing.

Moving to a new city where you don’t know a lot of people and have few connections can be a true test of your character. For me it has also been a learning experience in so many ways. Being somewhere with little sense of community and struggling to fit in can exacerbate a feeling of loneliness or homesickness in such a way that you can’t ignore it.

All through the winter of 2011, I pushed myself to investigate what it was I was feeling and  I found that I was struggling with homesickness for a home I’d never had. I didn’t want to go back to Albuquerque (though I dearly missed my friends) and I didn’t want to be in Colorado (though it is exceedingly lovely).

But what did I want?

Frequently as I would contemplate this thought, I would be given these verses: 

“But blessed are those who trust in the Lord
    and have made the Lord their hope and confidence.
They are like trees planted along a riverbank,
    with roots that reach deep into the water.
Such trees are not bothered by the heat
    or worried by long months of drought.
Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit.” 
                                        –Jeremiah 17:7-8

Every time I read this or quoted it aloud, I would then spend the day singing or humming the old spiritual “I Shall Not Be Moved”. I began to get a vision of myself as a strong tree with deep roots that could not be tossed about because of circumstances, whether good or bad. As I began to practice yoga daily, I found that Tree Pose was my favorite pose. As I would stand in this challenging balancing position, I would find myself thinking of my one foot, planted on the ground and imagine that I could feel the heat of the sun (which I associated with the love of God) as I “grew my branches”…a popular yoga expression for holding the one legged pose while lifting your hands up and over your head.

(Please Note: In my car, in the shower, and in my own mind I sound like the female version of this:)

Then on a particularly low day after asking for what seemed like the hundredth time “Lord, why am I in Denver?
I heard God say, “Child, you carry your roots deep within and you know that. What you need are wings.”

This was confusing to me because I’d longed believed myself to be independent and free. Free to do what I wanted. Free to make my own mistakes. Free to go where I desired.

Oh…wait….I’d never really been free had I? I’d really always been serving someone else, living the life that seemed expected, or waiting for life to start. Being in Denver, alone and untethered was an appointment with The Divine to move into a new kind of freedom.

Shortly after this realization struck me this verse began to pop up everywhere in my studies and reading:

 Look, the winter is past,
    and the rains are over and gone.
The flowers are springing up,
    the season of singing birds has come,
    and the cooing of turtledoves fills the air.
–Song of Solomon 2: 11-12 

 As the Colorado winter began to fade, I started to feel truly, madly, deeply FREE.
Freedom to be myself in all circumstances.
Freedom to trust my own intuition.
Freedom to feel passionately about things and not be fearful when others were intimidated by my passion.
Freedom to speak my mind or to be still, knowing that either one was acceptable.
Freedom to move into a relationship with God that was less about tradition and more about the Spirit moving in and through me.

And now as the days grow warmer and I begin to pack my things for a new adventure in Washington, I feel rooted in who I am at my very core…much like a tree planted by the water. At the same time feeling  free to soar like the birds after the winter is past and the time for singing has begun.

May you have both roots and wings…strength and freedom…and courage to step out in faith.

Roots & Wings–My Denver Tattoo


		
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Seattle: Come Rain or Come Shine–The Waiting (1.1)

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A wise blonde rocker once said “The Waiting is the hardest part.”

You were right Tom…you were right!

Current Seattle preparation activities include:

  • The Move Manager came over today and walked through my apartment to determine how many boxes to bring. On the phone he’d said “It’ll likely take me about 20 to 30 minutes.” To which I said “Oh, I think it’ll take you about 10.” He took one look at the shoebox and said “Yeah, I’ll be out of here in 5.” His only other words of wisdom were “You sure do have a lot of books. You might want to look at gettin’ one those Kindles.” *sigh*
  • I bought tickets for Linda KS to fly up to Denver to be my road trip buddy to Seattle
  • I rented an SUV for the trip to Seattle
  • I got rooms for each night of our road trip including a night in Missoula…home of my favorite ex-fiance
  • I know what day my packing/moving is going to happen and what day they are coming to pick up Carlos (my Jeep)

 

I am so eager to get on the road I can hardly stand it. Despite that eagerness I found that today I could hardly talk to Mark at work without feeling melancholy. I also got weepy riding the elevator down to the lobby to go home. I worked a long day just trying to get things done for Russ before I move to half days next week. I keep wishing Peter, Cuyler, Tyler, Chris were in town and in the office because I just want to laugh with them one more time as co workers. I take every chance I get to tease Darren and Mattias because I don’t know when I will again.

Let’s face it…I’m sentimental. I love my friends. And these sweet men have been so good to me professionally and personally since moving to Denver. I may not know much…but I know that the men mentioned above have reminded me how full the world is of good men who are kind, funny, and strong while loving their wives and children unabashedly and being a good friend to the new girl on the team and quickly making me feel like part of the family.

They can never be replaced. All I know is that for my part they are my friends for as long as they wish to be.

And now…back to the waiting…

Seattle: Come Rain or Come Shine–Prep Work (Post 1.0)

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I’m moving to Seattle.  

This fact when stated aloud elicits reactions more so that any statement I’ve made in recent memory. I can summarize the reactions into three general categories:

1. Former Seattle-Dwellers–These folks have the most consistent reactions. 

“I loved living in Seattle…you will love it.” 
“Seattle is so quirky and fun…you are going to enjoy it.” 
“Everyone reads there…you’ll fit right in.”
“I’d move back in a heartbeat. Here let me make you a list of my favorite places.” 

2. Friends 

“I can’t believe you are moving farther away.” 
“I will definitely come visit you in Seattle!”
“You are so excited that it must be the right decision.”
“Here are the names & info of all the cool people I know in Seattle…”  

3. Captain Obvious and His Band of Fact Staters

“Ugh…It rains a lot there you know?”
“You will need to take extra Vitamin D you know.” 
“It’s very liberal up there.” (This one cracks me up…see the title of this blog…then move on)
“They have a Starbucks on every corner. Hope you like coffee.” 

4. Grumps & Haters

“You are going to HATE Seattle.”
“The weather is going to make you depressed.”
“Don’t get your hopes up that these sunny days during summer will last. The winters are miserable”  
“Have you ever LIVED in the Pacific Northwest? I give it less than a year.”

Category 1 makes me feel even more eager.
Category 2 gives me a warm feeling in my heart.
Category 3 makes me laugh and gives me an opportunity t o use my well-honed sarcasm skills.
BUT…
Category 4 makes me want to rip of the speakers arm just to have something to beat him/her with.

Listen Naysayers…
I don’t like or trust people who can’t stand other people’s happiness. My decision does not affect you in any significant way. You were going along nicely before I came along and you’ll be fine after I’m gone. Oh…and PS…I don’t like you. That also goes for those of you who have a negative opinion about my new company or new position. And it goes DOUBLE for those of you who think it is necessary to talk badly about my hair being frizzy. (Ok..that might belong in the Captain Obvious category but some people say it with great pleasure…and those people are jerks.) You are the same jerky people who found sick pleasure in the fact that I struggled to find work for a few months in 2010. Or the people who enjoy a good break up story. And the same folks who like to watch ANY personal or family drama unfold from the bleachers of my life with a bag of popcorn and soda, as though I am here for your personal amusement.
A few words of advice. Get a life. Shut the hell up. Find a way to fill the empty hole inside yourself that makes you mean.

 As for the rest of you…
Thank you for the support and encouragement.
If I’m moving far away from you…please know that breaks my heart too. I love my friends and I love setting my eyes on my friends.
If I am moving closer to you…please make a little room for the new girl in your life. I’ve done this move thing twice in less than a year in a new city and could use all the support and friendship I can  get.
If I’m leaving you behind at IP Commerce…oh those words hurt my heart just typing them…know that you are much loved and that I am phone call away if you need me. You all have been my family in Denver. Sometimes dysfunctional and on any given day you’ve run me through all 4 of the categories above…but still much loved.
My dear friends and family…please know that you are loved beyond measure and have a spot in my heart and a place to lay your head in Seattle any time!
But bring a raincoat…I hear it rains a lot there. 🙂

More to come as the days progress.
I’m going to love each of you (except maybe the 4s) Come Rain or Come Shine!!