The path to our destination is not always a straight one. We go down the wrong road, we get lost, we turn back. Maybe it doesn’t matter which road we embark on. Maybe what matters is that we embark.”
― Barbara Hall
In the autumn of 2017, I had written an article titled Eat, Pray Love. A new path was unfolding – it was a journey of soul searching and to go inwards. To summarize, the article touched upon a one year sabbatical leave from the corporate world. I did not realize how much I needed this break and the influence it had upon my spirit. It truly was placing pause on everything and learning to trust.
I had a million expectations on how the year would unravel, which in all honestly taught me a valuable life lesson. What came forward was to expect nothing, and allow each day to progress naturally. In my mind, I anticipated to be working in a new high paying job, living in a big city and to be in a new relationship. Having all answers to come instantantly and everything to be perfect harmony. Traveling to India was high on my bucket list as well as “finding myself”.
Did I ever get a dose of reality! My perceived expectations on how the year was to unfold was completely unrealistic. I wanted to be in control and had to surrender, progression happens on its own terms. I wanted all the answers however, had to be patient. Teaching yoga, meditating, writing along with self-care is what my heart truly desired. I began to understand what I was really seeking was balance, serenity and connecting with the higher-self.
To find the balance you want, this is what you must become. You must keep your feet grounded so firmly on the earth that it’s like you have 4 legs instead of 2. That way, you can stay in the world. But you must stop looking at the world through your head. You must look through your heart, instead. That way, you will know God.”
― Elizabeth Gilbert
On my year off, I began to pay closer attention to nature, and its cyclic rhythms. The sun shines without any hesitation and provides light to the world. This light changes with each season, as we now are into winter it offers retreat. It’s time to reflect and nourish yourself during the darker days. Each season offers a gift, this miracle I never would have recognized if I had not taken a year leave. Falling snow reminds of me of patience and to be in sheer appreciation of what life is. “Every blade of grass has its angel that bends over and it whispers grow” . The beautiful quote from the Talmud was so humbling to reflect upon as there truly are unforeseen forces that guide us along our path.
Life led me to the United Kingdom instead of India. My grandma fell ill at the end of 2017 and familial energy pulled me to England. I knew traveling would happen at some point. In summer/ autumn of 2018 I flew to Paris, France as my first destination. Then ventured to Austria, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Spain and Italy. Traveling to India was not in the stars during my year off. I realize that I was trying to force this trip. Instead I was brought to a new energy and love – Paris. The city has such a bright light as there is much is to be seen & discovered. It is a soul calling just as much as Italy was.
In hindsight your own unique experience of Eat, Pray Love can happen anywhere. Cities or countries call on your spirit for a reason. It is so enriching to travel but ultimately, we are what we believe. Sometimes I wonder if traveling has all the answers or do we need to just silence the mind and meditate? I believe we must do what feeds our soul. Will I ever stop traveling – NEVER!
Throughout our life, there are unpredictable circumstances in which we are never ready for. In November of 2018, my Grandmother from the United Kingdom passed away. We truly never know what each day has to offer or which direction we will pursue. My new perspective on Eat, Pray, Love in remembrance of my Grandmother.
My Grandmother was 92 and lived an abundant peaceful life. She personified Eat, Pray, Love for many reasons.
Eat: From the moment I would arrive home Grandma would always ask me if I had each meal throughout the day. She was simple and really just wanted everyone to be together especially at tea time.
Pray: My Grandma whom we also called Beji prayed profusely and this is one thing I take from her legacy. To always know you will be taken care of, believe in the unknown.
Love: Grandma had 5 children, 18 Grandchildren & 17 Great Grandchildren, for me this embodies love. Family always came first, along with service, prayer and laughter. She remains in my heart and soul and I dedicate this article to her light. I do feel when one leaves the earth plane, the memories are never forgotten, if anything there are etched into our being forever.
What does Eat, Pray, Love mean to you? Your path with unfold, allow the signs to come and know that there are no mistakes but lessons. Travel, learn about yourself and never forget to leave a bit of sunshine wherever you go. Take time to understand yourself, and take those moments to appreciate where you are and how far you have come. There is a purpose to everything in your life story. One day you will look back and connect the dots as Steve Jobs said in his famous dialogue.
Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy. — Eskimo Proverb