conectioning: there's no safety in stuff and other thoughts from the road

photo taken with my Panasonic GX 85 and edited on my iPad.

once upon a time there were many things I loved and the things I loved felt right. splayed out around me, they made me feel secure. safe. cluttered to the max, I never thought about getting rid of anything (or even washing my tea cups, ewww). I needed security with my stuff because I felt like I had no other security. I slept with my most precious things in bed with me (including piles of books!!).

all these years later, do I really have any more trust? any more security? any more safety in the world?

if anything, these adult years have brought home even more the point that all our beloved people will move away, change and (sooner or later) die and that nothing and no one is really ever safe or secure. the only constant is change.

the very idea of safety is a myth we are sold to convince us to buy more things.

and so I've changed.

and my relationship with stuff has changed, rather drastically.

this year, we put 99.9% of our belongings into storage for an entire year, keeping only what fit into A Golf Sportwagen with us, and while there are more than a few things I miss (my autoharp, our guitars and piano, the blender and toaster oven, my photo printer, some of my clothing, my amazing collection of essential oils), mostly, I don't miss it.

one car load of things. and it is enough.

(there's ebb and flow to it. we add a few things, we remove a few more. ebb and flow.)

stuff is just stuff now. not a safety mechanism.

this year is shaping up to be difficult. I started writing this piece a few weeks ago and it stalled, as so much of my writing seems to be doing right now.

but picking it back up today, and reworking the end, I got to where I needed to go with it and that's another lesson in and of itself: by writing in this moment (and the next, when it happens, as it happens) I am writing what I need to write.

and what I need to write will get written.

(when I write it.)

(keep writing.)

we've ended our long California sojourn and are now in Arizona, where we're staying with M's cousin and her husband.

their backyard, where I am currently writing, smells like orange blossoms and this familiar smell transports me back to my university days, which is so long ago now, but so closely remembered. oh memory.

how far away, how long ago. and how near.

time and stuff and people and scent. all intertwined.

we keep going, keep writing, keep breathing, moment by moment.


"what are you doing for you?" my half-sister's dad asked. his wife died in January, out of the blue. I was thrown for a loop.

(thrown. for. a. loop.)

he meant what am I creating.

what am I creating? for me.

photos (but not really: my camera sits in it's case untouched for weeks on end).
(but really: my cell phone has a very decent camera and I create a lot of art with my iPad!)
poetry (but not really, when did I last poem?)
(but really: I poem as I need to poem. I poemed a lot in February. I didn't need to as much in March. I will poem every day in April, once again, because April is poem-a-day month. most likely on instagram because that's my go-to poeming place.)

and I started knitting again in the last month, needing something to do with my hands. I picked up an embroidery hoop and some floss. I go back to photos and poetry and writing and all sorts of handiwork.

usually in February, I have a house project of some kind to work on, but not this year. this year we have no house. I am become my own house, my project is me. my project is what I do in the world.

it is truly a different way of looking at life, this traveling life.

and he didn't mean I needed to be constantly creating. creating in spurts is creating. I took it for a loop, but look at all I have done, in this last month. look at where we have been. oh my goodness.

and look at the emotional work I have done, too. (the stuff that's out of the picture, here. my private journal has gotten many words out of me these past months. processing.)

and look how much farther we are going.

(we continue inland into the US for a few weeks, and then we're off across the pond on our next international adventure!)


I am forty four and I am traveling the world for a year with my beloved husband and son.

yes. please. thank you.

thank you.