It's 5:15 in the morning.
Only a light rain persists after the loud, thunderous storm that just kept me awake for the past few hours. One crack of thunder was so loud that I thought a transformer surely must have blown out power in our entire area. Now, the dark morning sky is highlighted only occasionally with the burst lightning in the distance.
I'd normally be getting up right now anyway.
My eyes are tired, but the wild energy of the storm still pulses loudly through my entire being.
Somehow, the calm after the storm wanted to lull me back to sleep. But, my mind is wide awake.
I feel like the prep for my move in December, in conjunction with the holidays and the actual trek across the US, felt a lot like the storm that I just witnessed this morning.
It was exciting. It was invigorating. It kept me awake during hours I'd normally be getting rest, and it definitely kept me engaged in the thrill of the unknown.
Over the last few weeks, it's been a whirlwind. We said farewell to family and friends in Chico, California. We spent five days in Redondo Beach, where walks by the beach, last-minute holiday shopping, and numerous Christmas festivities took place. From there, we traveled from So Cal to Prescott, AZ the day after Christmas (which took four hours longer than expected due to post-holiday traffic). The temperature drop alone from the mid-60's to the low 30's (and snow) was enough to throw my system into shock.
Well, it did, actually. I got sick.
This made the drive across the country quite a snotty one.
After a day in Prescott with our gracious cousins, we drove straight through to Daphne, Alabama. This isn't as bad as it sounds, though, as driving halfway through Texas at night makes the remaining hours to get through the state somehow more tolerable in daylight. Plus, I saw the longest shooting star of my life during that midnight driving stretch in the pitch black of night. Steve said it might have even been a comet, due to the long, visible tail. Either way, it was spectacular!
Alas, we made it home to Sarasota Florida, where tidbits of the traveling inner storm lingered during our first week here. Damage control was our first call to action since renters had occupied the home for the past two years. This involved some seriously deep cleaning, lots of laundry, and a hunt for missing items in the kitchen, garage, and yard.
As I'm writing this, the rain has stopped entirely and the only sound I can hear is the typing on my keyboard and the low hum of the large palm frond fan above my head. I can't see it, though, as I like sitting in the dark as I type. It makes me feel like I am still in tune with the stillness of the world around me. It also allows the vibrancy of my inner being speak aloud, with clarity, out of the silence.
This time awake has actually allowed me to put a focus on my year ahead.
My intention is to stay connected with the peace and clarity within me as I adventure playfully through my life experiences.
I know that there will be storms, and sleepless nights, and road trips, and new friendships, and more changes than I can possibly imagine over the next several hundred days of 2017.
I know that there will be unexpected moments despite my time in meditation and preparation for the best.
Thus, I will treasure these times in stillness and appreciate the broad perspective they offer. I will deliberately seek out more quiet time with myself, so that I can know the best actions to take in any given situation.
And, I will definitely relax into the unfolding of life and enjoy the surprises that delight me on this journey.
Here's to a great new year for us all!