I have had the most amazing time for the last two days. I have been on what I will call the Vanessa Road Show. This is sort of how it has gone so far:
On Thursday morning, as in, YESTERDAY, I left my home in Pennsylvania at 5:00 AM, and drove to Westmoreland, New Hampshire, where I have not visited for several years. I spent my last couple years of high school there with my family before going away to college. My first official stop in New Hampshire, was at the family plot at the town cemetery, to see how it looked, and check on my grandmother and my brother. There is a strange sort of comfort and peace, and also, grief, that comes from visiting the graves of those that we love. I didn’t expect it to feel as emotional as it did, and I stayed present to it, and called my parents to share in it with me.
Then, I drove to Keene, and saw the changes in the town where I had worked my first jobs and gone to high school. I then found my way to the home of my best friend from eighth grade on, and we spent the afternoon having lunch, sharing stories, visiting with her mom and sister, and getting to know each other as adults. It was total bliss.
Then, it was off to Panera Bread in Keene, where I met up with friends from high school, none of which I had seen since graduation, so, we are talking, 32 years! What an amazing time that was, talking about issues that impact us all, and how we are evolving into who we most want to be, and how we want to take our mission to the world. Fascinating, and I can’t wait to do it again! And, I even got to confess my fear that they would all decide to not show up! Funny, right?
There have been other stops since then: staying with my dear cousin last night in New Hampshire; spending the day with my big sister today in her home, sitting on her couch, and cooking for her; and tonight, writing this from my aunt’s house in Massachusetts. Making moments at every destination, and getting total joy out of it all.
I am amazed at how vitally important that this trip was to me; not just because I was going to see people whom I hadn’t for a long while, and who are important to me. But, because I feel like this trip was and is part of my mission of what I am carrying forward: my chance to keep speaking the truth, to help others to do so, and to connect deeply with the experiences of others. I have been doing more listening and more opening my heart. I am enjoying what I learn, and I am committed to doing it all again.
And, sharing it is the best way to spread the word. Connect. Be. Love. Give and Receive Joy.