I recently realized that reading, whether novels or blogs or non-fiction, has immense power for me. Most simply, it’s the power to feel united and to expose the constant truth that we are not alone. This Christmas, I asked for a few kindle books as gifts and one of them I received was “At Home in the World: Reflections on Belonging While Wandering the Globe” by Tsh Oxenrider, one of my favourite bloggers. I wasn’t sure if I would relate to it since we’ve always taken a pick a place and root down approach to traveling and seeing the world in short snippets is more exhausting for me than appealing. What I didn’t realize was that it meant that her book was essentially a book about transitions and goodbyes – very relevant to my life right now.
She explains her daughter’s thought process:
“Can I pick out a painting for my room?” Along with her scrolls from Xi’an, she’s also collected a batik print from Kenya. I go ahead and nod, bending our souvenir rule. “Wherever my room will be, “ Tate explains, “I want it to look like this year.”
I felt so connected to that last sentence that I was suddenly crying, overwhelmed with truth. I laid on a cloth mat in a sweet village in the mountains east of Chiang Mai and let myself sob, let myself actually feel the loss of leaving Thailand. I let those words run through my head like a meditation I could feel, wherever my rooms will be, I want it to look like this phase of life, wherever my space will be, I want it to include this part of me. What is so striking to me is that both sides of the sentence ring so strongly in my heart. I don’t know where my home will be! But wherever it is and in whatever form it is, I want it to represent the part of me that has come to love this place so much. I want to take physical pieces of it home – to wherever home will be – because I don’t know when we’ll be back and I know I can’t fully take along the smells and sights and pace of life.