Day 29: Don’t underestimate the middle.

Everything is in the middle.

The first week I spent slowly withdrawing. This last week I spent scrambling to stay. When I look at it that way, that makes the time in between sadly emptier or less full–to put a wee more positive spin on it.

We spend a lot of our lives in the middle, don’t we? The in-between. That space before a decision. The time looking. The time adjusting. The time getting to and fro or just circling. Like Pema Chodron said, “we are always in process.”

Though we move from moment to moment, I find it hard not to bookend time. To mark the beginnings and endings. To snag momentos and mental snapshots of what will never be again. I feel a little somber wrapping up my time here. Maybe because this me time was really about putting on training wheels. The middle ground before the change I seek that’s altogether new.

The middle is where momentum builds. Where the pendulum dips before the next rise. The valley between peaks where all points of view hold promise. Where potential pools… Who knows where I’m going next. I’m happy to be in motion. Re-fueled and in a higher gear.

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“The truth is that we’re always in some kind of in-between state. We never fully arrive.” – Pema Chodron

Tomorrow, I’ll be leaving my comfort zone. I decided to spend a month in a quiet coastal town in a cozy house with a beautiful view of a river nearby beach dunes, vineyards and farm land–and not much else. Call it a sabbatical, a retreat, a time-out. It’s my way of shoving a bookmark in the middle of my life story. I’ll come back when I’m ready to dig in again.

I quit my job almost three months ago now. And, three months in, I’m still not untangled. My schedule has been busy. My mind has been overloaded. My days just as harried as when I was working full-time. So now I’m quitting my routine, too. Where I live, who I see, how I while away my time…

Am I in transition? Well, as the quote above, life is always in transition. I’m taking 30 days of me-time to embrace the change, explore new and present choices and see what shakes out. I don’t expect to have answers at the end of the month, but I do somehow believe the quiet, the stillness and the calm is what I need to propel myself forward again. I have ideas of things I’d like to do but ultimately I have no solid agenda. It’s just about carving space to do more things I love, to learn what inspires me most and to let go of any structure… It sounds like it should be the easiest thing to do, right? And yet, in fact, it is a difficult lesson I’ve been trying to teach myself. To not know. To be comfortable being lost. To un-plan and make room for whatever may come.