Saturday, June 20, 2015

Find your time. Find your peace.

The one thing that I wasn’t looking forward to when moving out to the wilderness was commuting. Before the move, it took me all of 3 minutes to get to my office and now it takes me a full 45. How would I wake up that early? What about not taking the dogs out for lunch? When was I going to be able to shoo-shoo? (TMI probably). However, I kept comparing it to my dad’s commute for all our years in Dickson. We purposely moved an hour outside of Nashville to give us a simpler way of life while he sacrificed two hours of his day driving back and forth. Talk about a family man. If he could do it, I could too. 

After talking to my oldest brother, who assured me that he actually misses his 45 minute drive back and forth to school, I actually became pumped. If you know me, then you know that anything my brothers say is golden and taken straight to heart. I was sold.

So on my first day, I woke up early, rolled the windows down and turned on Jason Isbell (if you don’t listen to him by now, then you’re seriously missing out). With Alabama Pines playing in the background, and the neon pink sunrise coming up over the cornfields, I almost mistook my life for a movie and drove straight to the coast. Okay, it wasn’t that dramatic, but you see where my heads at. It was rewarding. Like I was getting to have this special show all to myself, just because I woke up a bit earlier.

The days following my first commute were very similar: usually graced with a beautiful sky or amazing storm clouds. Good music playing a theme song in the background. I have 20 minutes of backroads to bask in God’s greatness and then 20 minutes of highway to belt out some tunes and get my head right. 

What i’m coming to realize is that it’s not necessarily the scenery, or even the music that makes this a new favorite ritual of mine. It’s the possibility of silence. Spending time alone, with only my thoughts to keep me company, sounded boring at first, but now it’s actually intriguing. 

Think about your day…when do you ever get a minute, let alone 90 where you can zone everything out? I’ve never had that before, and now that it’s been forced upon me, I crave it. Of course, it’s hard to keep your mind from racing straight to a to-do list, or all the things you forgot to do the night before. In those cases, just turn the music up louder. However, usually my mind goes to blessings, and counting everything that I should be thankful for. I’m sure the sunrises and scenery have something to do with that. I have time to reflect and get excited about upcoming events or call a friend I haven’t talked to in awhile. On my way back home, I can decompress. Leave all the shit from work somewhere floating around in my car and not in my mind, effecting the rest of my night. And if I’m not in the pondering mood, it’s been nice to not think about anything. Sometimes time doing absolutely nothing is time well spent. 

Is this why weirdos have been raving about meditation all these years? I guess I finally get it. I know we hear it all the time, but it’s true: in today’s world we have to learn to unplug and slow down. For most people, like me, we find that happening in a way that we wouldn’t have necessarily chosen by ourselves. So I encourage you to find your solo minutes, whatever it may be: hiking, traveling, cooking, yoga, running… Not feeling energetic? Just go for a drive somewhere pretty. It’ll put some things in perspective and from what I hear, apparently keep you from being less bitchy at work. I guess I wasn’t much of a morning person before. A little proof that people can change some, if given the right road map and a good mixed cd.