On the Road to Find Out

Well sometimes you have to moan
When nothing seems to suit you
But nevertheless you know
You’re locked towards the future
-Cat Stevens

Sally and I have moved about the surface of the planet a great deal in the past ten years. We’ve been looking for the right place. Trying to solve such problems as heat and humidity and cold and snow and ice and affordability. Looking for beauty and inspiration and belonging and community. Exploring such things as population density and accessibility and the differences between living at the edge and living in the center. Always the assumption has been that, mostly, we can do what we do wherever we are, and that “where we are” might provide our access to satisfaction and fulfillment and meaning and purpose and happiness.

And yet, try as we have, we’ve yet to find the perfect place. And so we continue to move about. This year we’re exploring a back-and-forth existence, following the birds from NC to ME and back again. But even that has its drawbacks.

It has become clear to us in the past few years, and more so in the past few months, that we may need to lead with the other foot. Which is to say that, while there’s some degree of truth to the assumption that we can do what we do wherever we are, it’s not the whole story. I might be able to pursue my writing career from any place I end up, but there are other things we’re interested in that seem to require a larger population from which to find collaborators. And we might be better served by using “what we do” as the determining factor, rather than “where we are.”

Sally needs to use her gifts and skills as a therapist and empath and group facilitator. She needs more daily connection with other human beings. I have interest in connecting through theater and music. And we’re both interested in working with groups and couples and individual seekers, helping them learn to process and heal relationships and conflicts, helping them to find and take steps toward the realization of their visions and the meeting of their needs.

We’d like to work with communities. Or businesses. Or other organizations. We’d like to work with Aspie-Neurotypical couples, and spouses of those on the spectrum. We think we’ve worked out a wonderful working ASD-NT relationship, and would like to help others do the same.

We’re thinking workshops, classes, seminars, groups, sessions, dialogue circles, and intensives. We’re thinking retreat center. We’re thinking of developing a program and writing a book and doing a podcast and making our gifts, skills, and talents available to others in any way we can. And it seems clear now that we need to have ready access to large population centers in order to do that work.

Where this will take us we’re not sure. Perhaps it will keep us in NC most of the year. Quite possibly it will take us back to the Triangle. Maybe we’ll end up someplace we cannot now see. Maybe it will keep us on the move. We just don’t know. Being on the move comes with its own set of problems, and we’re both inclined to be more settled than that. But perhaps its possible to settle more fully into being in more than one place, like we are right now.

We’ve learned not to project too far out to the future, as if we can predict where the conversation is going to end up, as if we can control the rest of the Cosmos. We’re learning to just “start close in,” taking the first step, the step that begins the conversation. And then we have to be patient, and “really listen,” and notice the invitations that come our way, and which doors open, and who responds.

And then we’ll take the next first step. Doing what we do. Going where that leads us. On the road to find out.

photo credit: Dr. Michael Gama shares on the Christian Eastern tradition via photopin (license)

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