I just had a memory pop up of those times when travel was a decision which was not so loaded with consequences... it reminded me what was, how fortunate I am to have such stories and also of what I am working my way back to.
Last year I came away with a lot on my mind and some peace to find. Having found a brand new family in Nepal to work alongside, I came to India to sit down and listen to my heart and little and try and hear what it's been trying to teach me. I just needed somewhere quiet to sit and think. I found this place. And I fell in love with these rocks. I swam out to them every day. I talked to them every day. (Yeah, I was talking to rocks. What of it? Shirley Valentine talked to a wall.) I found they were very good listeners. I could tell them all the horrible things inside my head, and they wouldn't move. They didn't go anywhere. They didn't judge me. They just carried on being rocks. They were warm and they held me. They let me be still and supported me. And more profoundly than that, I watched them being battered by enormous waves time and time again, and they were still just massive slabs of stone. In fact, if anything, when they were having life and nature flung at them, they became more beautiful. Over the past year when things have been tough, I've frequently reminded myself of these rocks. The rocks that kept my secrets and just were. No matter what I was going through, I kept reminding myself that somewhere, the other side of the world, the tides kept rolling and the rocks were still standing, steady. I found peace in the knowledge of their reliable sturdiness, even when I was not near them.
And so I'm back. One year later and many more chapters of rapture and desecration down the line, I wanted to come back. I knew if I could trust anything, then these rocks would be the place I could find that key to restart again.
I went out to swim this morning. The beach was deserted at sunrise. Not another person in view. I swam past my rocks and was staring out at the vastness. Lost in the sky and the rhythm of the big crashing waves and the narrative of it all, I lay back and submitted to the water.
My existential daydream was shattered by a loud whistle close to my ear, like a referee. I leapt back to my surrounding and realised that I had drifted dangerously close to the other jagged side of the rocks. The next wave would have inevitable sent my head crashing against them. There was no one around. No one on the beach. No one to whistle. And no one close.
Now you can draw your own conclusions as to what happened right there. And I am sure you've already just hypothesised a few already (that's right jugglers / atheists, it is was just because I'm a great big hippy) but right now I'm feeling very grateful to have found enough space in my life to not need to know why, I am just grateful for what is.
It's not often in my lifetime I've found enough time to stop and listen to myself enough to not need to question, to not need to know the answers, just to be present and loving enough to be grateful for what is. That's enough for me, right now. Gratitude and Love. That's enough.