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Navigating Life

my journey home zen road trip

If you read last weeks blog, you know I’m 1 week into a 3 month “zen road trip” across the country. This week I was in Mystic CT, Salem MA, Somersworth NH, Endicott NY and Toronto CA (it’s been a busy week)!

Yesterday, I was sitting in Collegetown Bagels (this great little place in Ithaca, NY next to the Cornell campus) and I’m thinking about these long drives I’ve been on and how they’re such a metaphor for how I navigate my life!

When do I trust the course I’ve set? When do I need to take a detour? When have I hit a dead end and just need to turn around already?!? The analogies are endless.

Deposit Photos

Father-Son Guidance

Then I overhear a father sitting with his son as he is writing something about a personal experience on his computer. The son is staring at the words on the page quietly while the father gently suggests ideas for adjectives that his son may be looking for. He offers guidance on how to tie back to the original idea the son had. The son sits and stares. He is quiet. The father gets quiet. I find myself holding my breath, waiting…for what’s next…

 Then the father takes the computer, contributes a few things and the son gets excited…”Yes, that’s it! I get it!” he exclaims. The son then reclaims his computer and starts typing furiously. The father needed to provide a little guidance, the son needed to allow him to take the wheel and they are back on the road again. I am struck at the beauty in this interaction and the delicate and loving balance of their energies as they trust one another. It’s one of those sweet, intimate moments I’ll never forget.


Cruise Control

Back on the road again and I start thinking about the cruise control in my car. I’ve always resisted using it. I don’t like not having “control” and using it always makes me feel disconnected from the road. However, now that I’ve got plenty of time on my hands I decided to take another look at it. And with the new technology of my car, the damn thing not only controls the speed, but the distance between the car ahead of me and will steer itself as long as my hand is touching the wheel. How cool is that?!?

So as I settled into my new norm of allowing the car to take me instead of me taking the car, I found I was able to find a whole new rhythm. A way to relax into the drive on a deeper level. To still stay alert, but also allow my mind to wander wherever it wanted. It was beautiful to just finally let go.

How often do we do that in our lives? Hold so tightly to the wheel that there is no room to focus on anything else around us? What if we allow ourselves to truly melt into the realization that there are other forces here with us, to guide us? Whether it’s a father in a coffee shop, a mother on a soccer field, or a gentle whispering in our ear, we all have these beautiful little nudges that helps us know when it’s time to course correct. 

Just a week into it, and this trip is already helping me let go…receiving the assistance that’s always been right here for me all along. 

Isn’t it time we all start to enjoy the feeling of cruising through life again?


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