Time as gone completely “wonky.” The calendar says that I have been in my new community for just over two weeks but my Being feels as though I have been here a good deal longer.
Yesterday, Tomas and I had our two-week informal interview to see how we were adjusting to life here at Lost Valley. Over lunch, the other residents asked us questions that were meant to address any of their concerns for how we were doing, as well as their opportunity to ask question for more information about why we chose Lost Valley; what have we found challenging (here or in previous situations); how do we see ourselves aligning with the goals of the community? Like that.
There will be another interview when we have been here for three months. There we will be asked different questions but yesterday had a flavor of that deeper kind of questioning that usually happens after people have been here for a couple of months. And that is how I felt when I went to bed last night — like I’d already been here a couple of months — not merely two weeks.
Tomas and I talked about why this might be so. For one thing, we have “jumped right in” — as we usually do — and attended meetings, asked our own questions of long-time residents to get background and historical context behind current issues. We have attended meals and cooked a few times for others and generally made ourselves visible and available to engage with others, especially our dorm mates that we share the first floor with.
Each day is relationship-rich and event-rich, giving me the feeling that time has extended itself beyond a 24-hour period for every day.
Each day has brought me more in harmony with Mother Earth, as I walk unhurriedly between buildings along the forest paths in lieu of sidewalks. It doesn’t matter if the weather is weepy or chilly, I always feel renewed by these walks among the ferns and the trees.
Each day has given me the opportunity for deeper interaction with someone and often that someone is myself!
Each day the expectations I had prior to coming here are being fulfilled. This is allowing me to rest in the choice that Tomas and I made to come here and that at long last (after searching together since 2009) we may have brought ourselves to the place we have been searching for.
That we may actually be HOME.
Home is many things to many people. But for me it is a place I know in my soul. It is a place where I can be my Self, unhindered — a place to express the many aspects of myself and share my many talents and gifts.
And learn new ones!
Two nights ago one of our residents who has learned much about “survival skills” conducted a class on cordage — how to make cord out of vines, in this case, nettles. My only prior experience with nettles (“stinging nettles” as I learned to call therm) was to avoid them. Conrad skillfully showed about 15 of us how to take the long nettle stems, pry them open, strip off the woody inner lining and roll and twist them into cords. It was an amazing evening! Very ancient and familiar, once my fingers got the “rhythm” of the work.
There were children involved and a couple of toddlers just being with us, as we sat in front of the wood stove and stripped, whirled and twisted our nettle branches into cordage. Some of us just got the basics and felt blessed. Others of us took it further into necklaces and tree ornaments. There was such a community communion among us.
This is actually a lot for me to receive. I will stop now and move into my day, an open day for me to move through gently. The saying Home is where the Heart is comes to mind. My heart has been at home in many places. This place feels like a Home Coming for a much deeper part of ME.