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Going home?

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  • #116571
    Graham
    Participant

    Don’t know exactly how or if this fits. I’m a man, far nearer the end of my journey than its beginning, and find myself filled with longing for the place where I was born, and where I lived for awhile after college. It’s the rural part of a flyover state, and probably not that impressive or desirable to most people. But I spent the first three years of my life, and the first real year of a professional life, out there. I knew in my heart that I was “home” when I returned after college, but my head wouldn’t let me stay. Now I find myself trapped 500 miles away, in a marriage I don’t like in a job that doesn’t matter to me. My soul seems to tell me to go back there on one last big adventure. But I have an adult disabled son who I cannot leave, and cannot take with me. Looking it all over, I can’t believe I let go of my dream so easily, and could abandon my heart so easily. But I did. Not that all has been bad since, and, besides my son, I have a daughter, his twin, who is wonderful, and I know that if I’d stayed where I was she would not exist. I’ve had many good things happen to me since I left, and live comfortably. But my heart aches every time I see photos of that place, and I can so easily recall the wind and the smell of sage and the big relaxing openness. I don’t know if I am simply symbolizing depression into longing for a time long gone and lost, but I only know when I think of those times and that place my heart aches and I want to cry.

    Any thoughts or insights?

    #116574
    Jonathan
    Participant

    It sounds like a really nice place.

    …but if you cannot leave your son you cannot return.

    Could you plan a vacation there?

    #116609
    anita
    Participant

    Dear grahamcracker:

    I think you long for the hopes and dreams you had when you were young, hopes and dreams for a life way better than the one you are having. I think you want to be free of your marriage, of your job, of your disabled adult son.

    anita

    #116617
    Joey
    Participant

    Hi grahamcracker!

    Wow. I actually created an account just so that I could reply to you. I’m currently facing a decision to either leave or stay in a place that really speaks to my heart. My heart says I should stay, but I’m currently dealing with a crippling amount of anxiety (aka my head) which makes staying seem like it would be the death of me. It doesn’t make much logical sense at all to stay–and yet it’s what’s in my heart. I have no idea what is the right or wrong move here, and if such things even exist, but here’s what I know for sure:

    Never do our hearts stop speaking to us. Never does life inscribe in black and white that we’ve forever lost the privilege to follow curiosity or wonder or that we are punished with a lifetime of regret for ever having ignored our hearts. Each tug from our hearts is a chance to begin again.

    And so here you are, in many ways in the same place you were all those years ago. It’s evidence that the heart doesn’t care how much new information has been shoved it’s way–it stands steady in what it knows.

    I say find a way to get over there, even if it’s just for a couple weeks. You’ll be doing yourself such a loving favor. All of the logistics can be ironed out with an open mind. But as long as we continue to allow our minds to keep us in this in-between place, where what we want lies somewhere too painful or too impossible to travel to, we will be willing victims of a very boring and dramatic (and painful) saga.

    Wishing you all the best,
    Joey

    p.s. For the things you absolutely cannot do anything about (like your past), I’d recommend looking into Byron Katie’s The Work and maybe even checking out her book, Loving What Is. It’s been an enormous gift in untying the stubborn knots in my mind.

    #116672
    Graham
    Participant

    Anita – yes, I miss those easier times when I was younger. Yes I’d like to be free of my marriage as it now stands– or to fix and transport it – I don’t care about my job, but in no way do I want to be “free” of my son. I only want to understand and somehow integrate this inner longing with my outer life. I’d not trade him or my daughter for anything, I want to keep them and still resolve this need.

    Joey – I think you may well understand that tearing feeling when the inner longings don’t match the outer world, and how I am trying to integrate my heart and my head. Actually, I am more than 1,000 miles away, and there is no simple way to get out there.
    I’d like to get out there for a visit, but that would be hard. I’ll probably soon enough be willing to ante up the price, though.
    I so powerfully recall one day out there, when my-then closest friend (how painful to write that, another topic for another day) came out to visit. He asked why I was so drawn to the place, so I took him to my favorite spot, atop a limestone butte. I gestured toward the West, where the sun sat low in the sky, over a wide-open tract of land, creased by buttes and canyons, from where the wind blew softly in our faces, the shades of brown and the blotches of dark green. “That’s why,” I said, “why I would never be happy anywhere else.” And he agreed that, for me, it seemed perfect. And it was.
    And it was less than a year later that I stood in the pressroom of the small newspaper where I worked, chatting with the teenaged boy – an American Indian whose extended family was on a nearby reservation – and told him how I liked wandering in those hills and thought about maybe going further west. “Then why,” he asked, “are you going back east?”
    And I had no answer. Still don’t, obviously. But I wish you the best, too, Joey.

    • This reply was modified 4 years ago by Graham.
    #116676
    anita
    Participant

    Dear grahamcracker:

    My questions, if you are interested in examining the topic further:

    You don’t care about your job: does that mean you are financially able to end your employment and move Home (your desired location)?

    You are unhappy with your marriage as it now stands. Are you willing to end it?

    If you still hope to fix your marriage, how can that be done? And will she be willing to relocate with you?

    Regarding your adult disabled son, why is it not possible for him to relocate?

    anita

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