Back in early November, I had settled into what I thought was a pretty decent routine. Reading, walking, hiking, meditating, and exploring my hobby of photography. That routine came crashing down when the house I was living in became contaminated and I had to make a hasty retreat.*
My patterns are still in a state of disruption.
Writing has become a bit secondary to solving the housing problem. But I did finish a series, at the invitation and encouragement of my blogging friend George,** about marriage and divorce. And that too left my head spinning a bit. I was, after all, revisiting some very painful memories. Basically, these memories, as well as the present situation, all involved a theme in common – the loss of home.
And I mean “home” in the more intangible sense of that word.
Not just a place to stay, but a feeling. A feeling of sanctuary. Of warmth. Of love.
Loss of “home” is not the same as moving out of a place we’ve “occupied.” It’s abandoning a sense of security, of integration, of sentiment. A home is where there is a heart connection. It becomes part of you. An extension.
Usually, this extension of ourselves is tied up with another individual or a family. It’s a communal nature. What makes a “house” a “home” is not the decor. Not the pictures hanging on the wall, or the color scheme of the bathroom fixtures. It’s an amalgamation of the feelings of warmth and protection and mutual love.
Quite an introduction there, I guess.
Intro to what? You know how I like to switch gears. 🙂
Well yesterday I woke up contemplating all that went into the construction of my last home, how I was separated from it, and the realization that it may be beyond my reach to ever create another. I was not in the most pleasant of states of mind.
I had been thrown for a loop.***
And at the same time that my brain was churning in this direction, I woke up to all of those nice and positive sayings and quotes on the internet.
From the Dalai Lama:
“Friendship depends on trust and trust depends on having a strong sense of concern for the welfare of others. Be honest, truthful and warm-hearted. Make compassion the basis of your determination. Think of what the future can be, not what happened in the past.”
“Time’s always moving on. Nothing can stop it. The question is whether we use our time well or not. We can’t do anything about the past, but what happens in the future depends on what we do now. We can create a happier future by remembering that in being human we are all the same.”
From Sri Chinmov:
“If I cannot forgive myself
For all the blunders
That I have made
Over the years,
Then how can I proceed?
How can I ever
Move, I must, forward.
Fly, I must, upward.
Dive, I must, inward,
To be once more
What I truly am
And shall forever remain.”
And from Willaru Huayta, Quechau Nation, Peru:
“This is the time of awakening to the inner father and the inner mother. Without this we will receive no high initiation; instead we get initiated into darkness. That’s because any investigation or revolution without God leads, not to freedom, but to more slavery.”
It was like a war was raging in my head. Back on that roller coaster of emotion. An interesting thing happened, though, that provided some differing perspective.
I was caught up over how the loss of love resulted in the loss of home. How I felt betrayed. But a woman I had just met on one of the dating sites (I know, sounds weird. And I certainly have many a tale to tell about the dating sites.) provided some insight in a different way. She sent me a series of questions.
You might call it a job interview.
I don’t know if I’ll be given a shot at the position of boyfriend based upon my answers or not, but the questions certainly pulled me out of the funk I was in and sent me down a different pathway.
Back on that sunlit trail, surrounded by Silver Oak, Cottonwood, Willow, and Sycamore in the low lands. Then replaced by Pines, Firs, and Junipers as I climb higher into the mountains. Evidence of bear and mountain lion abound. The apex predators whose land I’ve invaded. A Coatimundi emerges along a rock over-hang. A rare sighting of this high desert inhabitant . . .
Day dreaming on past adventures. A completely different type of home than I was dwelling on before. This one surrounded by “All My Relations.”
Anyway, here are some of the questions she asked that shook me out of yesterday’s gloom. And they made me think about just what constituted a home, and where true unconditional love factors in.
If you had unlimited resources, how would you live?
Do you prefer urban, suburban, or rural settings?
Living room? Kitchen? Do you like to sleep with the TV or radio on?
Is quiet important in your home, or do you prefer having music or some background noise most of the time?
Is it important to have a TV in the bedroom?
How important is it for you to have a space in your home that is yours alone?
Have differences about home style ever been a factor in the breakup of a relationship?
Did you have a paying job when you were in high school? Before high school?
Have you ever used money as a way of controlling a relationship? Has anyone ever tried to control you with money?
Have you ever dated someone through the internet before?
Have you ever felt deeply insecure in a relationship? Were you able to name your fear?
Now it might seem weird, but contemplating those questions made me think deeper about the past and what the future may hold. It made me ponder just how strong those bonds from the past were. What they were based on. What might have led to their failures.
What were my fears?
And it gave me hope that another home may still be out there. Even if I’m by myself. Because dependence or fear, or attachment to petty things, are not good attributes for forging an equal partnership. For constructing a house, or for turning that house into a home.
So, think about it. If you were trying to gauge if you could have a successful partnership with a new person, what questions would you ask? Did you ask those same questions of your current or past partner? What would happen if you asked that current partner of yours these questions now? Would you like the answers?
Funny how our minds work. How we can be spun in all sorts of different directions. All at the same time. And even stop and stand outside ourselves. Peer inward.
Introspection and perspective. That’s how we achieve growth.
And maybe, just maybe, we can find that winding path that leads back to our pure spirit. Our true essence. That unpolluted soul. That innocence we were born with . . .
Feature Photo: From a hike in the desert southwest. Yes the desert is not always exactly what one thinks it is; what preconceived notions we’ve formed, or what we’ve heard from others. Neither is a home.
Below is the White-Nosed Coatimundi. Hard to get a pic of these guys. I was lucky to snap this one. I wouldn’t mind sharing his home. 🙂
* See my post Advanced Camping and Chemical Chaos.
** “Thrown for a loop.” I love phrases like this and like to track down their derivation. What I found on this one is that it may have emerged in the early 1900s. First there’s a reference to being drunk or “looped” or “loopy.” And then in relation to boxing, where a knock-out punch was called “throwing a loop,” or “throw for a loop.” or “knock for a loop.” And finally there are references to acrobatic pilots “looping the loop” with their planes, and to being on a roller coaster, where the coaster arcs upward in a complete circle leaving the passengers upside down – both of which would cause one’s head to spin. 🙂 Nowadays, it simply refers to being amazed, shocked or confused.
*** George’s Blog is called “Random Walk Through Intelligent Universe.” He is building a great novel there. You should check it out.