*July 16th, 2013*
Despite my recent extremism when it comes to some dichotomies, such as the age-old question, I still strongly lean towards finding balance. The concept of having roots and wings may seem like a bit of an oxymoron, but it’s been a key part of this journey for me.
During the extensive debate on what I would name my website, I made a list of key words that were inspiring to me or that seemed to capture some essence of what I was seeking. I still keep that list with me and look at it when I’m seeking inspiration or linguistic reminders, and “roots” was a huge one on there; I came up with at least 5 different possible website names with “roots” in it.
When I met with the Shaman and his wife in Bellingham, we had discussed the paradox of feeling grounded/finding your roots while traveling. She is passionate about discovering and staying in touch with your roots; from familial roots, to soul roots, to the roots of the human tribe, we discussed philosophies of being connected to your roots as a way of finding your truest self. We had a mutual understanding that the challenge of having roots while traveling is really about finding your inner roots, being grounded and in tune with your self, no matter where you go or how often you’re changing places. At that time in my trip, I felt more grounded and connected to my inner roots than I had in ages.
Before I left Reno, I was given a necklace by a friend, with two charms on a piece of twine -- a tree of life and a wing. I haven’t been wearing much jewelry, but I wear this necklace every day; I love the simplicity of it's look, the symbology of the tree and wings, and simply, I just love the friend who gave it to me. Then, on the 4th of July, the twine broke and I lost the wing. I was having such an epic all-American holiday, and I try not to be too attached to material things, so I didn’t think too much of it at the moment, but within days of not having my invaluable charms hanging around my neck, I started feeling a little naked. The breaking of this necklace, and particularly the loss of the wing, seemed to be a physical representation of what I was internally feeling.
After that 4th of July and a fun, long-weekend adventure through the Olympic National Park, I started feeling really unstable and found myself desiring to feel more settled. Traveling can take it’s toll, and I was simultaneously feeling like I wanted to go somewhere or stay somewhere, but I couldn’t figure out how to find my roots and wings.
While attending the Oregon Country Fair, I hoped that I would be able to find a wing charm to replace the one I lost, so I could happily return to wearing my magical necklace. This whole necklace ordeal, from losing it on the 4th to the Country Fair, occurred while I was with a travel partner; I've felt very lucky to have his company and support during this portion of my journey, and his genuine, thorough attempts to help me find a replacement wing were charming, even if he wasn’t actually able to find one. Eventually I did find a wing, and we both agreed that apparently I needed to find it myself, but I am endlessly grateful for his generosity and sincere attempts to help me literally find my wing, and figuratively ”fly"; he may not have found the wing, but he reunited my charms onto a new necklace for me.
Almost instantaneously, things shifted and I was soon able to find my roots and my wings, together again. Coming off an extended period of feeling disconnected from my friends and family, I had reconnected with most of the ones I had been missing within days. Particularly, after over a month and a half of no contact with one of my sisters, we were finally able to connect and catch up for a long, laughter-filled, love-infused phone date. It was really everything I needed. We shared stories of our recent travels and adventures, discussed the striking similarities in things we’ve been dealing with, and when we anticipated each other’s comments, stories, and experiences, we joked about how fun it is to be part of a psychic family (we’ve both been through the clairvoyant program at Reno Psychic Institute, and both of our parents have taken classes there or through similar programs). We were also able to remind each other of the things we have truly been seeking and desiring, and my conversations with my family have reminded me that not only am I on my path, but also that I’ve been finding what I had originally set out to. In discussing both of our recent disconnects with our friends/family, she remarked, “I’ve gotta connect with my people; they keep me in touch with who I am!” I couldn’t agree more.
Sitting in a very French-inspired café, felt like the perfect place to reconnect. The French style reminds me of one side of my family, writing a postcard in French to my grandmother, and a postcard in English to a favorite French woman in Reno, while catching up with another traveling friend who’s currently in France, well, it seemed like an ideal place to reconnect to my roots – familial, friendly, and tribally. As I’m burning through any roadblocks I had encountered, I’m delighted to be finding my inspiration and direction again, and couldn’t be more grateful for my roots and wings, literally and figuratively.
Stories from the road-trip that inspired moving to the PNW, and other travel adventures.