I just watched Ian get in a cab and drive away to the airport, where he'll fly off to Honolulu (between the two of us, we're practically living in warm climates—i.e. not Seattle—these days) for a week-long conference. I chose not to accompany him on this one because I've just been to Hawaii, and I've just been to an additional warm place, and I was in a warm place before, and we were in another warm place before that, and, honestly, one of the things I like about travel is knowing that I have a home base to come back to, and frankly, in recent months, my home base has been so unfrequented by me that it was beginning to feel like a medical shop and that was pretty much all. I want to love my home, not dread it, and so, along with emotional cleansing for the year, I am also working toward rediscovering/discovering how to be free at home, instead of having to go away to be free. To integrate my work/play lives a bit more, if you will, in addition to integrating my spiritual/physical/emotional/mental lives.
It's daunting work, though, trying to figure out how to recognize deeply ingrained, unhelpful patterns of thought and bring them to light, thus letting them crumble and disintegrate in the air and environment . . . and I've discovered recently that I'd really prefer to do those things (and most other things) with Ian at close hand. I like Ian. He's my best friend. He's sweet and funny, he asks really good questions, he's a generous hugger when I'm having an unexpected crying jag . . . and he takes a lot of the dog pressure off by walking them every morning long before I'm interested in getting out of bed. I'm less independent now than I was 9 ½ years ago when we got married and that, like many other things I believe I know about myself, is a change I need to recognize and embrace.
And so, my new more-dependent self was sad to see Ian go this afternoon. Sad enough that I decided I'd rather—I'd better—stay home and not deal with driving him to the airport. Don't worry—I will keep myself busy this week, and the house will most likely not devolve into the pit of untidiness I surprised, along with Ian, when I came home three days early last week. But I'm sad, and he's only going to a beautiful place to work in an office setting for a week. There were a lot of troops coming and going from Seattle and Dallas when I flew last week, and I can only imagine how infinitely harder it must be for their families. My heart goes out to them.