By now, most of you know that I moved from up north to down south. For the first time in my 52-year life, I surged from familiar to unfamiliar. From safe to vulnerable. Wase and mapquest are my new besties!
The constant noise of nearly everyone knowing me (and my family) and visa Versa has stopped. Before, I could walk out of the house with a bag on my head, and someone would inevitably recognize my heavy voice, my quick stride, my child or my car. As outgoing as I am, at times it was bothersome.
The constant and sporadic early morning, late night and occasional holiday phone calls for hubby’s excellent handyman skills have stopped. He is the kind guy who is often taken advantage of.
Then there were the desperate calls for emergency financial relief, sometimes for thousands of dollars. We didn’t know that we were Bank of America!
Our home, nicknamed “The Resort” by friends was also viewed by a few folks as a hotel. We had ongoing requests for live-ins. We needed a “No Vacancy” sign on the mailbox.
We started out as teenagers with nothing. We worked hard and have accomplished much more than we envisioned for ourselves at age 17 and 19. Some people felt entitled to our prosperity. I cannot imagine what celebs have to contend with. We are caring and generous people but at some point, have to say no and people must find solutions to their problems from within and not from others.
The pleasure and relief I’m experiencing from the shenanigans may come across as selfish, but it is refreshing. I completely underrated anonymity.
The distance between what was home and what is home confirms the integrity or the lack of in many of my relationships.
Unreturned calls and messages, unresponsive and shorter text messages also bring further clarity, and it’s okay.
I am not referring to the frequency in which I talk to friends and family but more about the quality of our conversations. My best friend of 39 years has lived all over the world. The infrequency of our discussions never negated the quality of our relationship. We did then and still, today can pick up right where we left off and, regardless of distance, we’re always there for one another. Another bestie and I chat nearly every day.
With any big move from one space to another, we go through the process of decluttering and purging. In packing, we sift and sort through furniture, clothing, books, cookware, etc.., and chose to rid of select items. With relationships, the process occurs autonomously over time–some sooner others later, but the course is a natural occurrence in human behavior.
Greater solitude has emerged in my new environment. Every morning, nearby church bells ring precisely at 9. Some mornings, I awaken to familiar church hymns from childhood. It’s pleasant. I smile. When I sit on my front porch neighbors who drive by and whom I don’t know smile and wave.
The noise has stopped and I think better.
I can focus more on what really matters.
New goals. Yearly. Monthly. Weekly. Daily.
Quality over quantity.
In a good way, I am experiencing a great deal of discomfort in many new settings. Everything about my environment is unique. Pumping gas. Finding my favorite produce in new grocery stores. Locating the best physicians. Exploring the plethora of malls in Georgia. Navigating traffic from hell and–rediscovering shortcuts. Stepping onto high school grounds that are more like SJ college campuses with populations exceeding 3,000 students per school. These experiences are forcing me to live more consciously. My visual and auditory senses are heightened daily like never before.
In no way am I suggesting that you move to a new state, but I am encouraging you to break free from your comfy circle. Leap into a new and uncomfortable sphere and do that one thing that you’ve been afraid to act on.
Maybe it’s a career change you desire. Perhaps it’s going back to school. It might be making a big move. Don’t be afraid. Lean into the “it.”
If moving happens to be that thing, don’t be afraid. If you have a particular state in mind, visit and explore the area. If you’re uncertain about where you want to move, visit the cities or states that interest you. Do your research. Look at the economics, the climate, the job market, the schools (if applicable), housing, crime rate, and any activities that encompass your interests. Develop a strategic and well thought out plan to make it happen. I wish we had done it sooner, but I think the move occurred when it was supposed to.
In SJ, I was busy all of the time. Running here. Racing there. Over-committing. Just doing way too much. We sometimes confuse busyness with productivity. They are not the same.
When I slowed down, I realized I needed to make changes in my life. The clarity I’ve gained from our move inspired and helped me to adopt the vegan lifestyle. A few years ago, I tried Veganism but was unsuccessful. Now in five months, I’ve pulled myself away from chicken, turkey, seafood, and dairy.
I haven’t perfected the lifestyle and have caved into seafood on two or three occasions, but I am moving steadfastly forward. I felt great before, but I feel even better now. Vegetables have always been a part of my lifestyle, but I’m eating even more plants now, and it agrees with my body.
So what does all of this have to do with wellness?
I’m reading, believe Bigger by Marshawn Evans Daniels. One of her quotes particularly resonated with me.
“Entering your purpose will first require an exit.”
I believe in the notion that everyone has a purpose for living. Furthermore, I see a connection between living with a purpose and experiencing wellness as a way of life. On our journey, both are present; one cannot exist without the other. We travel similar processes to uncovering purpose and to seek wellness.
In her book, Daniels talks a lot about God purposefully disrupting our lives. When you think of the word disrupt, you probably think of a force stopping or interrupting you while in the process of doing something.
Daniels suggests that the disruptions are “divine intervention” which can ultimately force us to leave a phase or place in our lives and enter another.
She writes, that disruptions:
- Interrupt belief patterns
- Recalibrate our faith
- Detach us from the part of ourselves that is incapable of entering a bigger future
- Create split-rock moments are catalyst to awaken us (Read the book!)
- Help us to do away with an out dated self image, to retire an antiquated outlook
- Realign us, elevate us and propel us to become a strong version of ourselves.
Y’all, her book is loaded with gems! Get a copy.
Since moving–and even with having an organized plan–I have experienced disruptions, but I did not recognize them or label them as such.
Rather than resist and react to the disruptions, I am learning to accept them (even previous ones) for what they are and to receive God’s wisdom to enter my purpose. You see, I had this plan regarding my next career move all mapped out, but I left God out of the equation, so Devine intervention is triggering changes.
My heart is open, and I am even more excited about the future. I no longer expect certain things and have embraced expectancy. Thanks to one of my favorite Podcasts, How Does She Do It, I know the difference. If you want to understand this, listen to the brilliant episode!
My purpose here is to encourage you to be fearless and to embrace change in your life.
The worse won’t happen, something better will.
Change is part of your wellness journey. Wellness is not a destination and there is no finish line.