CHASING AFTER SOMETHING

As the bus comes gurgling over some rocky desert mountain passes, we begin to near the California coast- the epicenter for nomads, travelers, and van lifers. If there was a twenty something pilgrimage, then I think the west coast would be Mecca. The sun is always shining, the waves always crashing, and the vibes ever so alive. But coming down that mountain pass, entering into San Diego- loud music, sunglasses and the window rolled all the way down- we felt a new sense of vitality. It’s as if we have reached the furthest point of our journey (maybe) and I begin to ask myself, ‘whats it all for?’ I think we often get mistaken for a running from something, whether it be responsibility, suburbia, 9 to 5 jobs, or fear of becoming boring- but I do think thats the case. I think maybe from the beginning the idea gets sparked from some of those places but I believe that this journey is more of a chasing after something. I think it is a search for true freedom, for creativity, for wonder and exploration, for discovery and challenge. I don’t think we are running from anything, I think we are chasing after something. And I don’t even know what that something fully is. We started this journey with the hope of having some purpose or to discover something about ourselves, to find a new vision for our lives or to discover a passion. But honestly not really knowing what that was.
    A few weeks ago we were spending some time with some friends who had gone on a similar pilgrimage, not in the same form, but in the same spirit of adventure and wonder. And as we sipped wine and talked over the cackling fire, I was reminded that there is no arriving. And that my hope of finding myself, or discovering a new vision for my life, or discovering freedom, might not fully reveal itself. It might take years of processing and a looking back to see where Ive come from and what this all really means for us. I was reminded, of an overused saying “its not about the destination but about the journey” and though Ive heard that a thousand times I knew it in a practical sense but I had not seen it in the spiritual sense. And that this trip for our souls, most likely won’t have an arriving, and that it is just a bite of the sandwich. We’re just tasting a little bit of the meat, but there is so much more underneath.  And so we probably won’t ‘find ourselves’ on this trip, if there ever is such a thing-but I hope to discover a little more, I hope to see some new things and gain some perspective, I hope to challenge myself and try new things so that I might stoke a fire, or poke at a passion. Our desire is to set ourselves free from as much structure and convenience to open ourselves up, to have margin to receive what the day might bring, what conversation we might have, what need may arise, we joy might be given to us.
    We finally make it to the coast, after sitting in a tire shop all day, we run out of the parking lot down to the water to stick our feet in the sand.The boardwalk is packed with cyclist, walkers, skateboards, dancers, talkers, coffee sippers – humans moving about their days.And we get there just in time to watch the sun fall behind the water and the sky transforms from blue, to orange, to all mixes of reds, purples. And the waves continue to smash into the shore, over and over. And it is the sound of the waves, and smell of the sea, the cool breeze coming off the water and all the people pause for a moment to take it all in- to watch and to breathe. And then the sun falls behind the waters edge, and so we jump back in the bus, hoping to find somewhere to sleep that night. We find some other RVs and Vans parked along a water way, down a dirt road and so we figure if others are there, we probably can be to. We quickly chow on some tacos and read Daisy some books and get her down for the night. And as we crawl into bed I find myself feeling at peace knowing that we are not running from something, but chasing after, and that this journey is about learning, and about discovery. And that any sort of agenda is just going to squash it. This life is full of surprises and that for this season I need to live with hands open, ears clear, mind free and heart attentive to receive what the day might bring.

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