The kids have long since learned to never ask this question en route to any destination.
When they were little, they would ask this every 5 minutes and I would say, “Half an hour more!” And then they would be happy for the next five minutes because little ones actually have no concept of time. They just wanted an answer. As they got older, and their concept of time evolved, and their logic, I began to simply respond “No,” because if we were there, we’d already be there and there would be no need to ask the question in the first place.
But we have travelled quite a bit in the last two years…
(Facebook has a way of pushing you to change your perspective sometimes. This photo was taken on our first visit to the land after moving here.)
It seems as though we always ask that question in some form or another.
Are we there yet?
Lately, this question has been asked of us every few days in this form:
“So…how’s the house coming?”
The house is not finished.
No we don’t have solar yet and with all honesty, we have been comfortably living without electricity for 10 months. Really. Ask the kids. We don’t have hot water, finished bathrooms, or a finished kitchen. We don’t have much furniture either.
We have had to make choices with our money over the last couple of years transitioning our life here – buying a car, trips to San Jose for the kids’ tournaments, trips to Toronto to see our eldest daughter and our family and friends, attend funerals, experience individual trips for Chris and myself to support our own projects and goals, and plan an upcoming trip to California for an opportunity to check off a bucket list item.
Since we made the decision a few years ago to not wait to live our life and go with our gut, we have had to choose between faith and fear. If an opportunity presents itself, and we have the money in that moment, we go for it even if it means living another few months without a fridge or a tiled bathroom.
We are still building and grounding. But we are focused on a different build right now. We are building a solid foundation inside and letting the external unfold as a reflection of how we feel, or our faith, and our support of each other. We realized how we were so afraid to call this place home on an unconscious level when we first moved here that this literally manifested in our incomplete house. But once the conditions of the external environment stopped affecting our internal thermostat, we began live in the potential of what can be and to take full responsibility for the creation of our life by focusing on our internal foundation. This has been our spiritual practice living in the jungle and now we are beginning to see our external life match this by feeling truly supported and committed to our life here.
If the outside world expects me to feel insecure or incomplete because my house is, can I step back and choose otherwise?
Of course there are days that the unfinished house fill me with insecurity and test my faith. I can physically feel my heart begin to close, my breath quicken, and my stomach turn. I stop. I feel my body. I ask for space to breathe deeply. I ask for guidance and support to hold me. I close my eyes and I begin to count my blessings. Every morning I have started to count every little and big blessing this life gives me. And each time I celebrate how much faster I can move through it – how fast I can get to embracing uncertainty with joyful expectation instead of being afraid of it.
The time it takes has shortened in the last four years. I used to be paralyzed by it even in the comfort of a fully functioning house in Toronto. In fact, that house was very old and time had started to reveal its age. We covered a lot of the cracks with a coat of pretty paint and in the back of our minds, we knew one day we would have to strip it down and look inside and possibly re-build.
My cycle of fear and rage used to last years and then months and then weeks and then days and now hours and sometimes even minutes. Ask my partner of 24 years. He has been patiently holding me through it all. Now we hold each other which helps us shorten this gap together. But it is a lifelong practice that never really ends. I can only work on building the bridge to the gap in this moment. We can only build from this place over and over again, solidifying the foundation with patience and optimism.
So no we aren’t finished yet…but at least we aren’t tenting anymore.
We have received so many blessings…part two of this post and the list of what we are grateful for building is up next.