I don’t honestly know what I believe anymore. I used to have rock-hard faith in a whole host of ideas, having gathered them from here and there throughout my life. Many of them became more firmly rooted over the long months of recovery from a personal health disaster way back in the 90s (see previous post The Night I died Part 1).
Over the next several years I established, almost without realizing it, my own personal philosophy of what I came to call “the Universe” or “Spirit.” At the heart of this cobbled together ideology was the theory of a benevolent force (i.e. the Universe) that somehow took an active interest in our lives. I never figured out where horrifying occurrences like the war in Syria and its ensuing refugee crisis, or poverty and greed, fit in this trusted construct of benevolence.
But at its core was the concept that each one of us is born with a given path to navigate although, at the same time, I didn’t believe in predestination. And DID believe in free will. So you can see my thinking had some obvious problems. And yet I was fervent.
I held, also, that if we listened and watched carefully enough we would sometimes be given messages to guide us on our way, to help right our course should we make a wrong turn. You know the kind of serendipity when a particular lyric on the radio offers needed direction, for instance, or finding just the right book at some great used bookstore that answers a problematic question. “Magic,” I often called it.
I believed that if I was sick, it was the Universe trying to communicate with me through my body.
When I look back at this, now, I wonder that I was ever so certain. It stands in such stark contrast to my current pessimism. But I was positive. Enough to get me to leave my home of eight years in Utah, to buy land in a state I’d only visited once and to build a new home and a new life on my own in New Mexico.
I think a little background is needed here. It was while living in Utah that I lost my marriage. Not long after we moved from the northwest we faced a problem bigger than the two of us and we just couldn’t find our way through to the other side together, as much as we both tried. So I found myself alone in a very foreign environment.
I came to believe I’d been guided to Utah to do some important emotional work, because I saw Utah as a healing place. This is what I wrote about it in a previous blog post, Of the Land: “Three Land Masses, the Colorado Plateau, the Great Basin and the Mojave Desert, all join exactly under the small town where I lived. The rock literally vibrates with its own power and radiates heat. I believe the ancients were drawn to the energy of the place for the same reasons we are: To heal.
When I painted in my studio my back was to 1500 foot red sandstone cliffs. I felt the place drawing old poisons out of me like a long soak in Epsom salts…
I know, now, it’s why I went to Utah. It’s also the reason I had to leave. There is too much pain memory for me there. The land took my sorrow but it also spilled my blood. The desert there is stained with it.”
However when I did finally prepare to leave, it didn’t come easily. It took me over two years, after the purchase of my land in New Mexico, to build my house and go. At the time I called it the long goodbye. No matter my efforts forward, seemingly on every front, I’d just keep sinking backwards. Ivins became my own personal quicksand and I couldn’t get free.
But finally one day, my home and business sold, I pulled up stakes and pulled away from my driveway in Ivins, Utah, for the last time.
Now for nearly a decade I’ve been gone from there (except for a trip I took with my friend, Kathy, the December before last, but she and I had a different focus on that trip), until Kim and I arrived back on September 24th of this year (see previous post Possibility Within Impossibility). I left off telling our story as we were being towed into St. George/Ivins (see previous post Breakdown).
Before taking the truck to the transmission shop we needed to get settled in our Snow Canyon State Park Campground.
Nick and his crew felt it’d be safe to drive the truck a short distance. So the tow truck dropped us off in a nice big parking lot…
… where we could unload…
… and separate our vehicles…
… hook the trailer back up to our truck…
… and tow the Airstream to the campground. Then we’d take the truck to the shop and also rent a car.
So there I was, back in Ivins, Utah once again. And not just back, but STUCK! Again. Talk about Déjà vu. I thought I was done with Utah and she with me. Little did I know.
To be continued…
Love to you all,