I thought I would post today since finally a bit of travel is coming up (score!). Friday I am leaving on a road trip to Florida with my friend Ken. We’re going to go after work and drive the ol’highway right down to Florida over a two-day stretch. His family is letting us stay with them for a few days at low cost, so I knew we couldn’t ignore the good deal. We hope to check out Palm Beach, Tampa, Universal Studios, and then couch surf in Washington for two nights. This is a much needed getaway for me personally. I have not traveled a single place in a year. Letting this sink in is shocking. It will keep the urges at bay, for awhile, hopefully. I’ve been meeting people lately who have allowed open discussion about the desire to travel, to experience more, to get away. The other face of the coin – responsibility, money, duties, always presents itself too.
I thought I’d use this post to share a poem I wrote around Christmas time when there was some difficult personal stuff going on my family. I found a park and just sat there pensively, watching my breath fade in front of me, the creek pooling and ebbing gently along. Finding a bit of quiet space is often when inspiration comes to me. I get this feeling where I sort of exist outside of myself, and I can really, truly, think. This was originally posted to Facebook, so I’ll keep my explanation and post it below. I believe it still fits, since after the summer, I really don’t know what I’m going to do with my life. I hope it is an experience that changes me and gives me some sort of new direction, drive, or passion, but the problem is I feel like I have too many. Do you ever feel this way? I feel like I’m often in a dangerous mindset. If someone were to suggest a crazy travel plan or opportunity, I might stand on the precipice of a decision in fear… then inevitably jump in. What is holding me back? I know for certain that money is the only thing keeping me from doing many, many things that have come to mind. When you have so many choices, what do you do? This is the dilemma of being a 20-something with no real roots.
Here we are:
“I had to deal with some serious stuff recently and it got me thinking about expectation, how at our age we’re faced with so many avenues and opportunities… how do we choose the right one? How do we know what’s right for us? And how do we bridge the gap between expecting things, from people, from the world, and ourselves, but not without going overboard? Since Oz, my mind has been scattered in a million areas and I always have this feeling like there is ‘more’. I just don’t know what ‘more’ is. I guess that’s what this is about.”
Photo from Perth, Ontario.
I need to distance myself from the strength of Expectation.
It is a body of water,
As I am a body of water.
It’s pooling and ebbing is a dulcimer distraction.
How could you not notice?
Or it is turgid,
Foaming at the mouth like a foul beast that says,
Hear Me Now.
The point is that it never goes away
Just as the beach of my childhood resembles nothing of its former glory,
Its sand stripped away and cordoned off rocks
Where screaming children would heave their youthful bodies in glee-
My eyes do not alight to the sights of my past.
The river is still flowing, and taking me with it.
I yearn for shores I have not seen,
Of places I have not been,
Of people who may not exist…
I am not a spiritless poet,
Weeding through the undergrowth of bitter dreams gone by.
I am not a defeatist,
Throwing in fictitious towels
Nor scowling at a world before me.
I am simply a being,
So sure and unsure of myself
I do not comprehend my own beginning and end.
I am girl, who sits by the river in a park.
Trying to discover why the water is my twin
Trying to discern if I am being pulled under,
Or led lovingly
When the road splits,
And I meander blissfully,
It often comes upon as a nagging feeling…
Laced with guilt.
The partially acknowledged,
But mostly ignored
Like remembering the chocolate you ate last night, and shouldn’t have…
Still it feels perpetual,
It is a phone call avoided,
An appointment put off,
This dance with Expectation.
The days keep on moving,
yet I still wonder so-
If I am the leader,
Or simply being led
And until I find my answers,
Until these thoughts are put to bed,
This dance with Expectation,
It plays on in my head.