“You can’t go home again.”
I remember hearing this statement as a child, my mother and grandmother discussing Thomas Wolfe. I was 8 or 9 years old and I remember the sensation of dread that began in the pit of my stomach and churled up my spine. “That’s not true!” my child’s mind vehemently argued, “I come home every day after school.”
That combination of words haunted me throughout my life until I began to see life as flow rather than a static, stagnant event.
Our culture of the mind conditions us to trust in what our minds tell us and show us, whether or not they are true or accurate. We have the ability of recall and used properly, can be beneficial. Remembering one’s phone number is quite handy, as well as remembering one’s home address. While still fluid, these facts are more “concrete” then we are.
Life and the human condition are more like the flow in a river. Time doesn’t stand still and it doesn’t flow backwards. It is always moving forward or at least outward. We don’t grow younger, we grow older, richer, deeper and hopefully, wiser.
With this train of thought, the expression “status quo” and specifically “status quo ante” cannot apply because it is not possible.
People step into our river and join their flow with ours. They might step right back out or perhaps flow with it for awhile before stepping out. I would venture to say that there are varying degrees of joining of rivers, blending and stepping out. Even in long term relationships there is a level of stepping out (time to themselves, personal development, working in different fields, to name but a few examples). In some other relationships, stepping out defines leaving our river and thus leaving our lives altogether.
We are different every day, though we are so close we don’t notice changes until either change is caused by a dramatic event or we invoke recall.
I find change most observable in my dance. I don’t strive for replication, so I notice that while the movement or pattern may be the same, I don’t feel like the same dancer from the inside. My balance, equilibrium and stability may be better or worse. Either way, my precision is affected; my ease may also be affected. If I demand that my body perform as it did yesterday or the last time I moved through this pattern, I lose an aspect of ease. I also lose an aspect of pleasure. The “whose body is this” sensation I have makes me wonder if I am experiencing a kind of out-of-flow. I’m resisting being in harmonious relationship with my flow. I’ve chosen to attempt to stand still or even swim upstream.
I also wonder if this applies to moments in my life in which I am insistent on a direction even though I am cognizant of the fact that the way, value or mission is not mine.
My sentimental heart wants to cling to the idea that familiar equals safe – even though I know that this isn’t true. For me, occasionally the knowledge that every moment is an opportunity for growth is overwhelming. I want to stand up in the river and let it flow without me. Just for a little while.
Then I remember that, like my heart beating and my lungs breathing, the flow will happen and I will grow and change just as my heart beats and my lungs breathe.
Getting out of my own way releases me to flow and “home” can be where I am at any given moment at any point in my life.
In my body. Awake. Aware.
I am Home.