Yearning Part 2

Remembering

That dream, the one I’d forgotten while I built a career and a way of life, was the yearning I was feeling ever more consciously as I stopped to pay attention.

The dream? I had always wanted to live on a farm in the country!

Death_to_stock_photography_farm_10smallI had wanted to own land and live in the wide open space where my neighbors could barely be seen. I wanted to grow things – trees, vegetables, flowers, baby animals. I wanted to paint landscapes, and the walls of a farmhouse, and my toenails! I wanted to create. How could I have forgotten?

I know now that I’m not alone in this forgetting. We all seem to get caught up in our lives – finding a partner, building a career, starting a family, opening a business – working out how to live in an ever-changing world. We forget what drove it all to begin with – what we really want, and that we’re here to LIVE, not to spend all our energy to make a living. We “make a living” so we can live, not the other way around!

Death_to_stock_photography_farm_7smallSo I decided to start looking for a house with some land, even as I couldn’t imagine leaving the home I’d rescued from demolition, leaving my friends and clients, or moving my practice. How would I “make a living?” How would I survive without my dear friend who always came to my rescue when something broke down at home? How could I leave my two feral cats who, after a year of wooing, now let me stroke their smooth fur as they happily downed their Fancy Feast?

But the dream, once again conscious, took over. Now all I could do was follow its urgings, frightening as they were.

It didn’t come easily. I’m an introvert. I don’t have the same kinds of experiences my extroverted friends describe where, once they make a decision, the Universe opens up and all sorts of synchronicities occur and opportunities fall out of the sky in astonishing manner. For me the internal is vivid, and the external is subtle and often elusive. But the Universe also provided, in a quiet way, for this introvert.

Through what I later found was a very narrow window of opportunity, I went to see a property much farther from Denver than I’d first planned. It was not love at first sight. But it quietly spoke to me and kept speaking until it drew me there with its reason. Each time I went to visit a piece of my heart connected to the place, despite its run-down condition and distance from town.

Wheat FieldSo here I sit today in front of my farmhouse, looking out on to a vast expanse of prairie and farmland, hearing only the occasional song of the one remaining meadowlark who continued to sing into the winter.

I sigh for the umpteenth time in relief and pleasure. Sometimes the realization of what I’ve done hits me and my heart takes a leap of excitement. I did it! Hard as it was, I followed the dream, and I have no regrets.

Who knows what will come 20 years down the road? When it comes, I’ll look at it too, because only by having the courage to look at the shadow and trust our own inner knowing can we live a truly fulfilled life.

What’s the dream you’ve lost in all the busy-ness of making a living? Is it time to take a peek and see where it might lead you?

Postscript

You may wonder where money comes into this story. Well, because this small farm was out of commuting distance to Denver, and because I had previously looked at my money shadow, I knew exactly where I stood financially, and was able to make an incredible deal on the farm. On top of that, I was able to keep my house in Denver as an investment (and because I wasn’t really ready to let it go!), and now it provides me with a supplement to my income while the equity increases. All in all, a win financially too! (To read more about the financial challenges of my move to the country, go to “When My Money Got Out of Whack.”)

To read Part 1, click here.

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