Travel Therapy

Traveling set in my soul at a young age.  There is a certain magic that comes with transporting to new surroundings and landscapes. Maybe it’s a type of escapism, but one thing I know is it brings people together who experience it with each other.  Even if my daughter and I go somewhere locally, the act of going into a new surrounding clears our slates and brings us back together in connection.

In June, we set off for a great California adventure.  We stuck to our budget, replacing the huge costs of Disney and Universal Studios with the wax museum and learning how to handle waves in Huntington Beach.  We manged to see all of the possible landscapes that California has to offer driving from Ontario up to San Francisco through the dry valley and taking the 1 back down from Cisco to Big Sur, then cutting across back over to L.A. and down to San Diego.  We made it through fatigue, seeing the realities of the city, being accosted in Venice Beach by a group of men, teaching daughter how to deal with people from all walks of life, how to stay safe in general in different situations and then how to stay safe specifically as a female.  We learned how to determine what areas of town are safe, how to pick up on shifts with people, how to avoid certain situations and how to express loving kindness through all the chaos and confusion.  Being that I come from a background of advocacy for people experiencing homelessness and mental health, it was a rare gift to be in a state that is so replete with homelessness so that I could teach her the ins and outs of what it means and how to navigate through it. We talked about how to deal with life in a sober way, tools that help us get through our struggles, what happens that causes someone to loose housing, what possibly causes are behind chronic homelessness, racism in our system and how to advocate for what is right and the hugest part we learned was loving others no matter what their circumstances are.  After the hard life lessons we had a lot of fun at the Boardwalk on Santa Cruz, watching sea lions, visiting with friends, how to book and stay at Air b n b’s, how to ride waves and many other experiences.  I just want to touch on the therapeutic aspects of traveling there though.  The beauty of traveling is connection.  Not only the connection that happens with the people we are traveling with but connection to the earth and the inhabitants of our planet.  When we experience the life of a subject versus reading about it, we embody a piece of that subject.  For instance, we can read about homelessness all day long but to be in the middle of it, to being sharing space with a whole street of people living in tents, you now are a part of it.  It changes you, you can feel for someone when you are in the same space as them.  If there is any interaction at all, that becomes a real situation.  When we hung out with the wild sea lions at the dock in Santa Cruz, we watched their behavior,  We saw them basking in the sun and saw the mother of a pup worry about the pup and leaped across four other grown sea lions to get to pup.  We learned about their capacity for caring for one another, that they like to sleep during the day in the sun, heard their alarm systems and saw how each other responded to each cry.  Had I read about this on the internet, I probably wouldn’t be talking about it right now but seeing and being with them in their space, i now know a few things about sea lions that I will always remember because I experienced watching them with my daughter, we had a discussion about them, laughed at their funny calls, and shared our time in that moment.  Traveling took us out of our heads, provided us with real time, novel moments, provided topics we could ponder together and revealed our hearts to each other.  We both got lost in the moment, shedding doubt, fear, clinging to the past, etc.  Traveling is like meditation that way, you let go of ego to experience what is.  You keep coming back to the present moment of what is happening to you now.  I suggest traveling when ever you get a chance.  Just go and experience life.


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Standing at a Crossroad.

Daily Prompt: 6/18/2016

I am at a precarious place in my life.  Two of my dreams, and one life path that I have been working towards goals on, are all completely different from each other and all inviting to choose which direction I will go down.  Each decision will change my destiny greatly, and I am confused as to what to decide.  I will break it down.

It is a life long value of mine to travel.  Transformational travel is on my radar to expand to in this Life Coaching business because when I traveled with Ren fairs, I learned that I will never have to be stuck in a situation because there are so many options to choose from in life.  It is a huge value for me to pass this on to my child.  I want to show her that she too can move around and learn from the world.  I want to show her the world is a kind place, that if she has faith in herself and in humanity, that wherever she is, so is her heart.  Well I recently have an opportunity to travel with her.  One huge value and dream to show her life by living it, not reading about it, is staring me in the face right now.  Right now, I must decide quickly if this is the path that we will live for the next year.  If chosen, I will commit to a full year of traveling with child.  She will school online and we will live our life learning and being in close relationship with each other which I long for deep in my soul.

Option 2:

Another life long dream of mine is to own a ranch where I can teach the arts, creative movement, writing and equine healing to youth.  I right now have an opportunity to buy a ranch that is affordable to start the program of my dreams.  This is a dream that I have been wanting since I was a child; much like the dream of traveling since a young person.  I have never been so close to realizing this dream before.  They are merely waiting for me to say the word.  The only draw back to this dream is that I will be very committed and will not be able to move around freely because animals never take a vacation.  They have to eat every day, the program will need work every day.  Youth will need programming every day and personal freedom will not be an option like traveling with daughter.

Option 3:

I could stay exactly where I am at.  I am finally participating in art shows, I have time to paint, parent, and play music.  I am working on Wellness Coaching Certification and do have time to spend on getting my Coaching business more marketing opportunities.  I can still do this on the road and at the farm but I have adjusted to the life I am currently living.  The only drawback to this plan is that I have to work four full time jobs to keep it going and I am tired of being pulled in so many directions all at the same time just to make ends meet.

I do not know what to decide but I am inclined to choose the path of the most freedom.  The farm’s freedom would be that I could live in the country and be around horses and give that gift to youth that may not have the opportunity.  Traveling’s freedom is that I would not have bills so I could spend more time with child which is my number one value, and staying put’s freedom is I already know it, I have time to paint, work on my art and music, and work on my coaching business although I feel scattered by my too many jobs.

What a hard decision but I AM BLESSED!!  I AM GRATEFUL!

6/18/2016  Prompt:

Write about a time when you were at a crossroads.  What did it feel like to have to make such important decisions that had enormous effects on your life?  How did you choose what path to go down?  For me it’s freedom; what is your number one value/?  And expand on it. For me freedom means to be with my daughter more, to teach her values to live by because one day I may be here.  Freedom is a family value: passing something along.  Freedom is a spiritual value: to let go on this plane so that I can be totally free when I die and learn to let go at the moment of death.  Freedom is a physical value:  To be able to move around both in exercise (to have time to exercise) and geography (move around the globe to experience life through experiences).  If you take a look at the decision in this prompt, draw a circle on your paper and divide it up like a pie.  What are the pieces that comprise your pie?  How do they relate to each other?  What values is each decision speaking to?  The pie can look like this:

pie for blog

You can make it look however you want to.  For me it’s easier to look at something because I am a visual person but you have your own ways that work for you.  I would love to discuss this with you also.  Sharing and comparing is very helpful for support and motivation.

Good luck with your crossroads!  Isn’t it wonderful to have so many options?  Don’t forget to be grateful on your journey.  It can make the day so much better and removes personal barriers so that you can help others who are shifting and changing as well.