Well, friends, after six weeks on the road, I’m back in Wisconsin. Atticus and I got here late Friday night, road weary and scratching with the left leg. I was road weary. Atticus was the itchy one. A good time was had by all.
I started on my Snowbird journey for a few of reasons. First, it was something Gary and I wanted to do when he retired. As you know, he took up residence with Jesus before he got to retire, which I’m sure he doesn’t regret. I, on the other hand, do. So, as a way to draw some closure, I hit the road with Gerp, the Traveling Writing Room. Did I find closure? No. What I found was that closure was the wrong pursuit. I discovered that closure isn’t possible when you’ve lost someone you love. Love won’t close. Love refuses to be tidied up. Once you’ve loved and have been loved, that love isn’t going anywhere. While there is a space, much like a huge air bubble, that can no longer be seen, it will always make its presence known. It is a part of me now, the love has been incorporated into my marrow, my bloodstream, and lives in every breath I take. So, no closure, but I did discover the grace of acceptance.
Second, I wanted to stop talking and start listening again. I have told God what to do and when to do it and how to do it for years now. It was time for me to zip the lip. So, I thought I’d take off and put myself totally at His mercy. How I got there, when I got there, and what was there when I got there. His choice. I don’t think I was ever in danger but what do I know? I was at His mercy. The TWR’s heater stopped working the first night out. My fuses refused to fuse. I knocked Gerp’s wheel guard off in a McDonald’s drive-thru. And, a truck slung a rock at me and cracked a side window on Gerp. I met some incredibly nice people at gas stations, camp grounds and rest stops. The TWR makes friends easily. I wouldn’t be surprised if the TABs company owed me a commission. I always had a place to lay my head. I always found a gas station in the nick of time. On a very frigid evening I ran out to Walmart and bought some ‘pool noodles’, slit them down the middle and insulated my water hose with them. God and YouTube, what more do you need? I listened and He told me in no uncertain terms, that I can do this. I can do this life. I can do the new normal. I can. You see, I am the daughter of a King.
Third, since Gary’s death I have not felt at home anywhere. I don’t know how else to say that. Gary was home. Where I had lived for the past forty-something years no longer called to me. I bought a new house, but it has never felt like home. I moved to a new city. No home there either. I have a new church family, while they are wonderful, I don’t feel at home. But after six weeks on the road, something clicked inside of me and Bam! I was home sick. I wanted to go home. So, God turned my nose back toward Wisconsin and said. “Go on.” With each mile behind me I saw faces of people I love, places that calm my soul, heard songs that heal, and felt a Presence that never abandons. Then, right before I drove up into my drive way I knew. Home is not a place nor a people. It is a Living Promise. Home is the Light that lives within. I said out loud, “I am home.” And, then turned off the ignition.
And God whispered, “Me too.”