Ever feel like you just want to go off into the woods with a backpack and never look back? Maybe your reason is the people you’re dealing with, or your job, finances, lack of purpose or just plain old wanting some time to yourself? I have been feeling this on a constant, as of late. I’m sure there is an entire group of people who wouldn’t mind at all if I did just that and would probably be praying under their breath that I get eaten by a bear in the process. (LOL)
What’s funny is that I have come across quite a few who share the same feeling as me in wanting to remove themselves, but if we all did this together that would completely defeat the purpose of trying to escape to solitude. Although… after binge watching a new series on Hulu about a hippy-ish cult/commune, I have thought more and more about how cool it would be to start a village with like-minded people… So long as there is no forced orgies or blood sacrifices, I think I could swing it.
Anywho. I was lounging in my living room with my husband the other night and blurted out that I was ready to go off of the radar and live in the woods. He kind of looked at me as though waiting for me to finish out that thought and then seemed a little perplexed at the fact that there was no follow-up thought to it. Now the reason for me wanting to go live as a mountain woman could possibly be attributed to the fact that I am a mother of a toddler and a teenager, but I don’t really want to run from them… Permanently, anyway. I’d take them with me after a week or two! It’s more that I feel like I am burning out and need to recharge. Nature is the source that always does that for me. I’m not that person always searching for WiFi or a better cell signal on my phone. I could care less about staying connected or most modern conveniences. I do enjoy having indoor plumbing, but if I had to bathe in a basin outside I think I’d be okay with it. I could go without fast food ever again or having a million places of distraction to choose from on any given weekend. I like the idea of growing our own food and all that jazz. As long as I have one pair of comfy pajamas, I could make it work! In my mind, that is.
Moreover though, I would really love to hear nothing but the sounds of nature. To sleep under the stars and start a fire to cook over and stay warm by. I feel like my Sagittarian ways of never wanting to be in the same spot for too long and craving constant change, is starting to really get the best of me. I love adventure and what could be more adventurous than running for your life from a bear, right? Especially since you’re not supposed to and doing so will surely make you their dinner. Talk about living on the edge! Of insanity.
I feel the need to break away from everything and anything that proves to be a source of mindless distraction, though. I would like to live in a state of mindfulness, living in the right here and right now. But even trying to find a time where my eyelids and subconscious aren’t heavy in order for me to just meditate and let my thoughts drift away, seems to be a task too far outside of my reach, recently. I begin to meditate and what feels like maybe five seconds later, I’m asleep. This doesn’t stop me from trying, of course. Being somewhere that I could be mindful of beautiful scenery and wildlife instead of while I’m at the kitchen sink doing the fourth load of dishes of the day, would be a nice change. Or waking up to birds chirping instead of the terrifying sounds of my four year old completely destroying her room. There has to be a healthy balance somewhere, doesn’t there? I can’t even remember how I got through these years with my now teenager. Probably because I mentally blocked it. We have to do that sometimes as parents, just to be in a mindset of ever wanting another child again. I can hardly find the time to write no matter how much my brain urges me to. Laundry is always within my realm of chores for the day and usually ends up cleaned, fresh and tightly shoved in a chair waiting to be put away. That is what is affectionately known in our house as, “the chair”. For one, its’s the only chair in the house, but it is also where laundry goes to die. When the chair is running low on clean clothes is about the time there is a stack of laundry to do, and the cycle repeats. Considering I am always in the same pair of pajamas, I don’t understand how I am also the one completely responsible for the heap of dirty clothes that are beginning to grow legs. Some days I feel as though I am one dirty sock away from snapping. Anyone else see the need for me to escape? Because it’s looking pretty clear to me as to why, now.
Sometimes I lay in the tub — just before my toddler runs in to ask if she can get in with me – And imagine I am laying in a crystal blue spring tucked back between mountains. And then I hear my husband telling our daughter to clean her room for the millionth time, and suddenly remember where I am. A few weeks ago I was sitting around my Mom’s kitchen table talking with both her and my best friend about the movie, The Blue Lagoon. I haven’t seen it since I was a kid, but I can still remember how I felt after watching it. I was almost sure that one day I would find some deserted island to live out my life on. As my mother brought up the movie, I realized that the dream I had as a kid after seeing it, never actually happened. And yet it is still a dream of mine.
The woods, a commune, a deserted island or a cave – it’s all the same. I feel the need to pull myself apart from everything that doesn’t matter. From things. I think there are a lot of folks out there who feel the same. Let me disconnect from all that drives me anxious and be someplace where I can only hear the sound of my own breathing. To be alone with our thoughts and the people who we can share them openly with, and let the rest of the world simply fall away. I feel such peace inside and I wish that I could take that peace a few steps further to be more evident on the outside. Who knows, maybe I’m all alone in this thought – but I doubt it.
Quite often I feel an absence, like something is missing and it feels like home. It’s as if I had been abducted years ago and am just now waking up to the fact that this place that I live in is not where I am from. That there’s something more to connect to, but I just haven’t come across it yet. Everything around me, including my own life, feels so temporary. Like now is the time and today is the day, but as responsible adults we say – Tomorrow. When we’re older. When the kids have grown up and moved out. When we finally win the lottery and no longer need to work in order to survive. We put off our dreams and assure ourselves with the word, “someday.” And for so many, that “someday,” never comes. What is it inside that tells us that tomorrow will present us the opportunity to live out our dreams? What holds us back?
When I decided to move out of state from where I had grown up my whole life, it was on a whim. I had absolutely no desire or plans to convince my husband to pick up our family and move to another state. But we had to travel through a couple of states for a funeral and on the way there and back I found a piece of me that was missing. We weren’t in any major city, but instead a small town. I remember looking out of the car window and seeing the bluest sky with the biggest, fluffiest white clouds above and bright green grass below. It was like I had stepped into a painting. There were no big buildings or power lines to obstruct the view, no traffic to make me tense. Only the spring wind blowing through the car accompanied by scents of wild flowers wafting through my nostrils, the sky above and fields of grass below. I knew in that moment that this is what I had been missing while living in the city. On our way back home from the trip we had to stay at a family member’s house in order to wait out a nasty storm. My husband and I sat out on their back porch that night watching the lightening light up the sky as the trees swayed every which direction. Again, no buildings or nearby homes to block the view of nature’s life happening right before our eyes. I was mesmerized. We eventually carried ourselves off to bed and in the early morning could see a family of deer, grazing just beyond the back porch. The drive home in the car with my husband was spent talking about how amazing the trip was, how relaxed and de-stressed that we felt and then… Silence. We both had something to say, but neither of us wanted to be the first to say it. After a while of this booming silence I blurted out that I wanted to move here. Immediately. That I knew that this is what was missing in bringing us closer to the peace that we desperately wanted. My husband echoed the same sentiment to me and we moved out of state the very next weekend. We knew what we wanted, we said it out loud and all of the pieces that needed to come together in order to make it happen, just did!
As I have felt that gypsy spirit in me wanting to roam again, I keep asking myself what is keeping me here, this time. Most people know what I mean when I say that there always seems to be a list of excuses that keep us from chasing that dream inside of us. There’s family responsibility, jobs, bills, etc. There’s always something, but unless you lead a life with zero responsibilities then there will always be SOMETHING. Maybe this life is not meant to be comfortable. Maybe we are supposed to continue to explore the world instead of settle down to one place. Or maybe I am just wanderer. Always looking for what feels like home.