“Coming back is the thing that enables you to see how all the dots in your life are connected, how one decision leads you another, how one twist of fate, good or bad, brings you to a door that later takes you to another door, which aided by several detours–long hallways and unforeseen stairwells–eventually puts you in the place you are now.”
― Ann Patchett, What Now?
The past week has been such a combination of emotions plus it was a pretty fun time to be back in Northeast Iowa. Maddie Poppe certainly took the country and my heart by storm. Congratulations, Maddie. You represented all Iowans so well. May your future be as bright as your smile. We are proud of you.
Even though I was there for a very short time, I was able to see and visit with most of the people I’d hoped to see. Gotta tell ya, I was reminded pretty quickly of the fact I have NO sense of direction. Those U-turns were much easier to accept on the way than they were on the way back. I felt like a true country girl as I started my route through the Dallas/Fort Worth area. I’d been an I-25/T Rex road warrior for many years but the layers of roadways intersected with incredible constructions zones as I drove around Dallas blew my mind along with my confidence level. I hung in there–it wasn’t pretty nor was the language flying out of my mouth! Today, my hands are telling me I must have been gripping the steering wheel very tightly! Phew.
Over the past couple of days, I’ve been reviewing my pictures, realizing I’d not taken many. Initially, I was really upset. I wanted to have photos to share. Then I remembered–when I began planning my journey home, it was my intention to be present–I did not want to be preoccupied by taking pictures. I wanted to be in the mix of making memories, not distracted by photographing them.
I realized I’d done just that–in my mind’s eye I see myself listening to all the shared stories while observing people who’d been a part of my life for decades. I could not have done that so well if I’d been focusing a photo.
I’ve been rewarded with so many precious moments, all captured in real-time and tenderly cached away where I can pull them up again. I was blessed by smiles and hugs from so many special people I love who love me right back–all unconditionally.
For a few days I recharged my soul, soaking up the peace and tranquility graciously bestowed upon me by that special place on earth named, Iowa.
I am thankful.
“Home wasn’t a set house, or a single town on a map. It was wherever the people who loved you were, whenever you were together. Not a place, but a moment, and then another, building on each other like bricks to create a solid shelter that you take with you for your entire life, wherever you may go.”
― Sarah Dessen, What Happened to Goodbye