Journeys

[gallery columns="1"] One thing I know for certain, I am a nomad.  I've moved a million times and traveled all over, and one of my biggest annoyances of going through a legal name change when I got married recently was having to get a brand new passport.  My last one was getting so nice and tattered, with stamps and stickers and visas and other assorted evidence of global crossings.  My new one is totally blank, and I simply won't feel right until it starts to get some action.

I also love hearing about the travel adventures of others, many of whom are far more adventurous than I am.  My friend Carol went bungie jumping off of a bridge in Victoria Falls in Zambia, my friend Mary has traipsed through Guatamalen jungles and my friend Heidi once shared a story with me of being in a full size bus that had to make a zillion point turnaround in torrential rain on a single lane "road" in - India?  Nepal? - because it had been washed out from a storm.  The catch was that one side of the road had a drop off of a few hundred feet into a turbulent rushing river, so one mistake and the bus would have gone careening off the edge.

I'm not sure where this passion for wanderlust came from, but it exists as fiercely in me as my being an artist does.  I couldn't turn this part of me off if I tried.  Seeing different parts of the world and making friends along the way has helped me figure out my place in the world, just as being an artist has, just as writing this blog sometimes does.

There are so many journeys we take in life on so many levels, and it is interesting to observe how they all feed off of and into each other.  I have been on many journeys in my lifetime, maneuvering my way through different relationships, challenges, homes, ages, personal transformations and families as well as countries and continents.  In all of these experiences there exists one common theme - my desire to further understand who I really am, deciding when there is room for growth and when to stay right where I am, fully accepting my own limitations.  I also find that the more I cling to specific outcomes or ideals of who I think I should be or how I think I should handle something, the more trouble I get myself into.  In other words, resistance on any level is usually what prevents me from finding whatever answers or resolution or experience I am seeking.  The more I let go, the easier everything feels even if things don't turn out the way I thought I wanted them to.

I have been on a heartbreaking, sometimes bitter personal journey this past year that is now finally coming to a close.  This journey is over, and I am now free to move forward without what has felt like a giant lead boulder on my head.  This is a huge relief but also surprisingly anti-climactic.  Unlike the train wreck of a meltdown I had after a beautiful, fun event - my last show - I actually feel no emotion about the ending of this journey.  The only thing I am interested in is getting on with my life yet still making the effort to pull whatever lessons I need to learn from this experience.  I know they are there, and I am willing to be patient to see what crops up as I move further away from this.  At the moment there is nothing but a pile of dirt in this corner of my universe, but over time the flowers will bloom again, and that is when I will be able to move into a space of gratitude for the fact that I had to go through this.

But for now, I am back home, and I can unpack my suitcase, take off my armor, lay down my sword and rest.  For now, there is nowhere to go but exactly where I am.

Christine Mason Miller

Santa Barbara, CA

Writer * Artist * Storyteller * Guide