This week, I was speaking with a good friend of mine. We were discussing the hardships of life, relationships, the parallels of our situations, and whether he should be talking to me at 11pm at night while walking on some dark trails in his neighborhood (HE SHOULD NOT GODS).
We got to a lull in the conversation from laughing, and he said, “I know what I want for my birthday.”
I had jokingly asked him the weekend prior as I’d seen a terrible plushie of Kootie Pie (Wendy Koopa) at a gaming store and texted him the picture with, “What do you want for your birthday, Russ-L?” We had re-watched the entire first season of the Super Mario Bros. cartoon back in college and couldn’t stop laughing at Kootie’s response to Bowser for the same question: America.
Because even the Veruca of the Koopa Clan can’t resist that American Dream.
“So, what do you want?” I asked, figuring it’d be some random thought process of wishing for another Power Rangers artifact to come out to buy.
“I want you to find everything you’re looking for on your trip,” he replied. “I want you to go there, and whatever you’re looking for, you figure it out.”
My voice cracked as I tried to find the proper response, which was something to the effect of, “I’ll do my best, you disgustingly lovable friend.” And I felt that pang of how much I’d miss him, and so many others, while I am gone. That pre-miss feeling where you realize this conversation probably won’t happen again, at least not for a long while.
He started his new job the day I gave my official two weeks. His chapter starting while my next one starts. As much as I worry about him, get frustrated, he’s one of the type of friends where we can argue for 20 minutes, then get over ourselves immediately and joke. We have frank, honest discussions about our different truths of life. I’ve come to depend on him for this. If there is one thing we both get from our connection (there are many other things, but this is huge), it is that we have found a safe space with each other where there is no judgement. I worry on his behalf sometimes, as he does with me, but we both tell each other things knowing that we’re just looking for a way to grow.
He’s probably one of the first people outside of my family I’ve been able to be truly vulnerable with.
After we hung up, I settled into my own way of meditation, which is that I calm myself through breathing exercises and thinking of my life goals. I started the process about a month ago after my second session with my Craniosacral Therapist, as a way to keep that feeling of my heart feeling open to the world’s connection to me.
The first time I’d done it, I was almost a weeping mess as it was as if I’d come back to being the person I felt I was without the tangle of my mind getting in the way. I could only describe the sensation as my heart chakra opening; I’d made a bond with a complete stranger, experienced true trust I usually wait years to give.
After my last session, I felt my mind set shift. The double amount of work at my job, while stressful, wasn’t touching my heart as it once had. And I felt ready to take on the rest of my time here before I leave without the resentful, “I want to burn this company to the ground.” It was an acceptance into me giving up my anger at not controlling that horrific situation and allowing myself to move on, something I knew I had to do, but wasn’t quite sure how to start.
I now try to recreate those moments every day as a reminder. It has been helping me immensely with stress.
So, this meditation was going back through my thoughts of our conversation we’d just had. I was thinking about thankful I was to have such a friend in my life, and it wandered on to the other friends I have.
There has been a whirlwind of many different issues, from supporting my life choices to deciding not be a part of them at all. A lot of realizations of deciding what I allow in my life, and that I have a lot more power in that area that originally believed. And the overwhelming sensations I get while saying farewell to my friends, receiving such warmth I didn’t expect that prove how wonderful the connections I’ve made have been.
Recently, a couple of weeks after my Craniosacral session, feeling particularly good, a wrench was placed in some of the plans I had while going overseas, which had a perk of being able to leave my suitcase somewhere for free, a place I could return to every few weeks from traveling to say hello, swap out some items, then move on to the next adventure. When it fell through in the worst way, while for the best, I knew this meant I’d have to change my way of travel, most likely to carrying a bit more than planned on my 500+ trek so I could have something other than two outfits for six months, shampoo/conditioner to last me longer than six weeks, and I’d probably end up not bringing any books. I’d even have to do a double take on whether I’d be dealing with my n3DSXL.
I’d explained the situation to one of my best friends I consider a sister at this point, as we’ve been through hell and back together on several different occasions. I’d been calm and looking forward to my trip, and I was suddenly distraught and full of confusion. I was calmed down, able to spew forth my emotions, and begin again with a clearer mind, if not a bit more grim. I refused to allow the issue to ruin my trip, as much as it was hurting.
Just last week, we were going for a walk and she told me that she’d gotten a fund set up a travel storage unit for my suitcase situation. Before I could tell her that I wouldn’t take it, she said that she’d told other people about my situation, and they all stepped up without her even asking to say they’d put money toward a travel locker I could come back and forth on for the six months I’d travel. The situation was clearly bullshit to anyone who heard it, she said, and I was not to worry, but know that I have support, love, and faith in what I’m doing — even by people who have never met me.
Several other friends offered up their connections overseas, from Ireland to New Zealand.
I have people checking up on me, asking me when to see me last, and people expressing their sadness for my leaving but undeniable excitement for my travels.
It’s been a cornucopia of love. And after a week, I began smiling with confidence that this will be the absolutely best thing to ever happen to me.
I have one last week of my job, and then it’s a month of me wrapping up details. Like dancing.