The Quiet Drive to Nowhere
The sun was warm on my left arm as I found myself headed down the two lane highway with Jenny in a friend's borrowed Dodge Ram. I was told I had to keep the RPM's down so it took a while to get the speed up to 70 mph. I cracked the windows to let some of the cool fresh air seep in. I sure do love driving with the windows down...something about the breeze on my skin that reminds me I'm alive.
I noticed the gear shift was broken in half. Tape was used as a temporary fix, but it, too, broke, so the top half of the shifter was just kind of dangling there, bouncing around with me as we hit each bump on the highway.
It was a quiet drive to pick up the tow dolley in some small town somewhere a few hours away. I was looking forward to listening to Rob Bell's 3 part conversation on God with Pete Rollins on the way, but there was no auxiliary input, and the old school cassette tape auxiliary adapter kept ejecting itself every time I put it in. I tried the radio, but it was fairly early, so the morning talk show hosts were still ranting and raving about stupid stuff and pulling silly pranks on unsuspecting people, so I opted for no sound. I later realized I was supposed to sit in silence because I was on the verge of a massive self discovery.
Jenny worked from the seat next to me. Making calls and taking care of stuff that just seems like it's the right thing to do when you're driving to nowhere and the radio doesn't work. Taking care of our RV tires. Upgrading our phones. Answering emails and doing some RV research so we can try and reduce the number of epic fails we'll have once we get RV'ing for the first time in a few weeks. The conversations were brief. She working. Me driving.
It's moments like that where you can fill the air with pleasant but simple conversations. You can talk about the weather. You can talk about her new LulaRoe leggings or the fact she ordered some for a friend as a surprise a few weeks ago but the lady hasn't shipped them for 2.5 weeks even though they were paid for right away and how we can't understand how people can operate a business that way. We can talk about all the Trump signs along the side of the road and how sad it is that racists & bigots feel like it's ok to spew hate just because some loud mouth man does it in the spotlight.
Back to the silence. It's often I discover things about myself in the silence. We hit the road so early I didn't have a chance to get my morning breathwork/meditation in. I guess it was fitting the radio was broken. It forced me to think. And my brain seems to always be going. I often catch my brain beating me up for the junk food I ate...or beating me up for the silent judgements I make towards others...or beating me up for skipping yoga...or beating me up for not playing with the kids more...or beating me up for not doing a better job of cultivating a local friend network that will allow me more time out of the house with people who love me (I get it, people are super busy these days, but I get lonely sometimes, and I love my wife and kids...but they can't be the only people I see). Notice: my brain is kind of an asshole.
So my brain started bringing it's inner asshole out to play. If I sit with it long enough...if I just don't lose it and let my brain win...I can get to the part where my heart speaks up and says, 'I've had enough!'
I love that part, because my heart is a truth teller. My heart is good. I trust my heart to lead me to the next loving thing for me. And I'm so glad my heart spoke up in that Dodge Ram. As I was headed down that rabbit hole of negativity and getting slammed by my brain, my heart told me this...
Why do you self sabotage? Why are you afraid of being happy? How come every time things start to feel good and right and wonderful you feel you don't deserve it? How come you feel you shouldn't be happy or even pursuing happiness? Because you do deserve to be happy, just like every other one of the billion amazing people on this earth. We all deserve to live a fulfilling life of joy and things that make us happy.
Look at the last few months of your life...you and your wife are closer now than you ever have been before in the 19 years you've been together. You're closer now to the freedom you've been craving ever since you realized all you wanted out of life was adventures with people you love. You get to spend your time working on a business that does good in the world...making art to help others know they matter, too. You get to be in charge of what your kids learn or don't learn about life since they're home schooled now. All the things you've ever asked for are right there present in your life.
So why are you trying to wreck it? Why are you letting selfishness get in the way of happiness? Why are you holding on to silly things that don't matter in the great scheme of life? Why are you throwing those things at your wife to pick fights? WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO START TAKING YOUR OWN ADVICE!!! You, as much as anyone else in this world, deserve to feel joy when waking up in the morning. You, as much as anyone else in this world, deserve to BE HAPPY. I'm giving you permission. Embrace it. Feel it. Live it.
It was on that quiet drive down that two lane highway I made space to truly hear what my heart has been trying to say for a long time.
Today, can you use your heart microphone? Can you find 20 quiet minutes somewhere and just ask your heart what it wants you to feel? Where does it want you to go? The one true thing I know in life is that we were blessed to be born with hearts that pump blood through our bodies to keep us alive and guide us to where we should be going. It's time we listened and led with our hearts. Le the love guide you.