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It’s been one week since I left home, and I hadn’t finished unpacking in Costa Rica, when it was time to repack for Nicaragua. I’ve been in Nicaragua three days, and we will be here 6 more on a life coaching retreat. This is the same place and same retreat I made my decision to change my life at just 12 weeks ago.
Over the past several days I’ve been asked how much I’m loving life right now, how my new home is, and where I think I’ll be in a year. The thing is, I can’t answer any of those questions. I have never in my life been so unable to identify my feelings. I am confused.
I know I am very lucky to have had a roommate waiting for me with a condo, a housekeeper, a group of people who welcomed me with open arms, and a couple of jobs ready for me when I got to Costa Rica. However, that doesn’t mean that this isn’t hard to do. To some, my move to Costa Rica was no big deal, easy and simple. To others, I’m doing something they can’t, and may not even want to imagine. My point is, it’s all relative and my experience cannot be compared to others’. This is my dream, I am living it, and it’s scary, it’s lonely, it’s exciting and fun, and it feels so, so weird!
I am 38 years old and have never lived outside of Cleveland. I’ve lived a fairly sheltered life in the suburbs, always just a phone call and minutes away from my parents and grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. I’ve worked since I was 14, through illness and through pain, but I’ve never had to worry about money or safety. If I got sick, my mom would be there for me. If I needed a home repair, my dad would come right over. If I wanted to go out, I had a plethora of friends I could call to arrange a last minute evening out. I miss my family and friends, but I don’t want to quit and go back. I miss the comforts of home, but I don’t want to go home. I don’t feel at home in my new place, but I don’t want to leave. I am feeling the discomfort I hoped to feel, and I am loving it and confused by it at the same time.
In other words, I don’t know how I feel, but I don’t think I need to. I have faith and trust in my own intuition, and in God and my guides. I can visualize and feel where I need to be, even if I don’t understand why. The “why” is not for me to answer, or even to know. When the time is right, I will know and maybe I will share with the world. In the meantime, this is my journey and my path, and I am grateful for all those who are in my life supporting me on it.
One week in, I don’t expect to feel settled. I know that home is anywhere I feel and choose it to be, but I have more clarity now that “home” is where my parents are. I also know that I don’t have to live there to know that, and that feeling is freedom. I referred to my new place in Costa Rica as home yesterday, for the first time without thinking, because it is my home until I move again someday. However, no place on earth can replace the feeling of “home” I have when I am in my parents’ condo in the outskirts of Cleveland. If home is where the heart is, then my home is with them, not a place on a map.
I left my parents with a photograph of the lighthouse in our hometown and the following quote on the back of it:
“You can only be a lighthouse for your children. You cannot steady the ship of the choices they have made, you cannot calm the sea of consequences, or stop the winds of worldly influences. But you can be the lighthouse where they can see a steady light of truth, a beacon to show them the safe harbor, and the port where loving parents will always be there with open arms to welcome them home.”
I will gratefully continue on my with my travels, but how lucky am I to know that I have a home to go to if ever I change my mind?!