If you’re a traveller like me who is finding themselves in completely different times at the moment due to staying home to stay safe and well, then I wonder how you’re getting through and coping with having your wings cut back.
As the title says I have been pausing, pondering, planning and preparing over the past few weeks as I’m sure I will continue to do in the coming weeks and months. How about you?
Pause: Before the lockdown, I had to take time to pause whilst travelling to check on my plans. I already had a train ticket home for a certain date which if necessary would need to be exchanged for an earlier one however in taking the time to pause and assess where the world, the virus and I were up to, I felt able to maintain my original return date. In pausing, I took time to check in with myself to see where the return sat and to also surrender to it (with accepting tears) and I let go of any concerns and resistance arising within me. Taking time to simply accept that some decisions were in fact out of my control and that there were also choices for me within those decisions. I would choose to say safe and be healthy. Past that nothing other than the safety and continued health of my loved ones and anyone I came into contact with mattered.
Ponder: Ahead of my return, I started to ponder and this continued on and after my return, in fact I’m still in that phase as well as going back and forwards in the space of a day or less. Pondering what it all meant, how this affected my mental health as well as my physical health and what would happen going forward. Pondering what I could do whilst being stationed not just at home but in one place. Pondering how I felt about it all in the moment and how it could possible be turned into a positive change and the positive way it could impact my life in this time. Was could I learn from it?
Plan: This was the natural step after the pondering as plans and lists always make me feel better as it shows a level of achievement either complete or awaiting and that is enough to raise my positivity. In the long term, I can also see how planning will also follow on from the preparation for more forward thinking or maybe the whole of this pattern will continue. So, planning for the initial few days back to prove to myself that I had practical things to take up my time as well as my Buddhist practices to focus my thoughts. Planning for the next few weeks and months and considering where my lists would lead me once all was sorted.
Prepare: Moving towards preparation, my actions were and are clearly preparing for something. I have cleared out my belongings and sorted my clothes into keep, donate and sell piles with my books into piles ready to read and decide where they go next. My teaching materials are divided up with some being used in the teaching of my godson which I am enjoying each day. What will happen to the rest of those later? Well that comes from the next cycle perhaps. Each time in the garden, I’ve been clearing away some weeds and tidying a little each time and I’ve noticed that this planning stage is also about making space. Making space in the garden for the new growth which will undoubtedly come and inside making space for all the new areas that will inevitable come and if they don’t then there is at least space. Space for new growth indicates HOPE, so all this pause, ponder, plan and prepare is all for HOPE for a future whatever that may entail.
Although, I’ve enjoyed checking through my photos and allowing myself to dive straight back into that whole memory feeling everything it has to offer, planning a future trip or any travel isn’t for the first time ever in my immediate plans. Strange as that may sound even to my ears, I’m not. That may of course change once the novelty of being back home has worn off, however I’m also ok at the moment if it doesn’t and what I’m feeling in this moment is all that matters. Whenever the next stage occurs, I’ll cross that bridge when I need to.
So, how about you fellow travellers, what are your thoughts/ feelings at this time?