Our Maiden Voyage, Part 1

first time driving

We're over a week into the journey and it feels like time to sit and write. So much has happened in seven days. So many states covered, so many new sights experienced, so many shifts.

road cactusI love watching the landscape change. I took this for my Mema <3 So many sights on the road remind me of my loved ones. I feel like I'm carrying you all with me.

rv travelI'm getting pretty good at making tea while we're driving. We stopped at a gas station in the middle of nowhere. No published prices because why bother when there's no competition for 100 miles. It's the most we've paid for gas so far. Note to self:: get gas in big towns.

It's interesting to set out on an intentional healing journey. To know that come what may we are in this RV and on the road to live our lives, have fun and welcome healing at every turn. There was a comment on one of my instagram photos that said "I wish I could run away like that." And it struck me as a gift in perspective... we're not running away from anything. We're running towards our life, our happiness, our whole health. We're so sure of this truth and it feels really good.

For months I've not been able to see past September, still can't. All I know for sure is that this is the month that our what next is revealed. We set out on Thursday evening and got a full hour down the road before the back of the RV filled with smoke and we had to pull over and sleep for the night without a/c in a grocery store parking lot. Full system shut down.

A journey is full of unexpected experiences around ever turn. I think that's actually in the definition somewhere! I figure there's bound to be a few in the category of our home is also our car and therefore requires a bit of maintenance to keep it all working. Right? Right!

this isn't goodsafer hereWe got something called Feliway to help Ned acclimate to the RV and despite being completely unamused when we are in motion it seems to be helping with his confidence.

After the black plume of smoke filled our bedroom full of white linens we sat with each other. We ran through a few scenarios and faced some serious fears about the journey ahead and our financial means to get there. It was quite possible that in one RV repair event we'd spend everything we had for the entire trip which would land us an hour down the road back home. That simply wasn't an option for us. We knew we had to see this journey through so we decided it would be and we sent love to our home that is also our car.  We went to bed that night laying as far apart as possible hot, sticky-sweaty and on top of the covers with parking lot lights blazing into our open windows. After several phone calls and help the next day we were back on the road. Want to know the miracle part? They never did find anything wrong with the brakes. All told it was several hundred dollars (and a case of Budweiser to the helper at Dale's) instead of several thousand. Miracle. Total miracle.

thanks dalejuice to goI made juice for the road and it turned out to be a lifesaver those first few days. Cantaloupe, kiwi, orange, lime. Make it! It's GOOD!

Junction texasWe had our giant green juice and impromptu photo shoot the second day on a campground picnic table in Junction, Tx. (( For those wondering, I'm holding the phone out and we used the GorillaCam app on timer. We did the blast and took a bunch of picts, this one was the cutest (and I love it). ))

this road.

Somewhere on the road in New Mexico we really hit our groove. It was 65 degrees out and glorious. In the middle of who-knows-where New Mexico we stopped on the side of the road. I ran around taking pictures and standing in the middle of the desolate and empty road yelling, "THIS IS SO PRETTY! THIS IS SO FUN!"

first time we filled the tankThe first time we filled the entire tank! 101 gallons!

so happy in the woodsThe wilderness is one of his happy places! Firewood gathering in Black Canyon Ntl Park, NM

A Facebook post of recommendations (note to self:: ask for recommendations more often, they're amazing) lead to the two most fun water experiences we've had in a long time. We'd just been having a conversation about Cliff's love of flying. I was wondering... what do I love as much as he loves flying? The answer----- w a t e r. Being in the water. Showers are my happy place. Steam rooms feel like a hug. Soaking is pure bliss. And so we ventured to Ten Thousand Waves and we soaked together with other naked bodies under the Santa Fe sun.

I'm struck by how natural it is to be naked with strangers. I'm not a nudist though I'm super comfy in my skin and certainly don't shy away from an occasion to be in my birthday suit. I observed myself sitting in the tubs with these other bodies. Bright shiny souls in human form getting all pruny together. I couldn't help but see us all as little kids running around with naked bums playing in the water just like my sweet two year old niece Chloe and her friends do every weekend at birthday parties.

As Cliff was laying in the sun (one of his very favorite things) I got back in my robe and went down to sit in the meditation room. I resisted at first. Did I really want to meditate when I could take a third shower? I decided ---yes--- time to meditate. As I sat there listening to soothy music waves of sadness washed over me and puddled at my trachea and around my heart. It was so much it had to be put into smaller (metaphorical) containers and made ready to leave my body. It wasn't a full on release as I've sometimes experienced in meditation. It was an elephant sized mass of sadness overtaking me and the room. It was dark and sticky and was broken apart by my breath and willingness to sit there with it. To feel it. To observe it.

When I opened my eyes and Cliff was sitting nearby in the foot soaking area. I joined him without a word. We sat together and looked at the Koi pond and water fall and smiled.

ojo calente

A full day later we visited Ojo Calente, another of the recommendations. We slathered ourselves in mud and laid in the sun to let it dry all that sadness started to move from me. You know how I know... I was having a blast. I went from all out exuberant joy throwing mud everywhere to laying still waiting for it to dry smiling at everyone walking past. There was what felt like a moment in the shadow of the joy, this stillness came in and with it I felt the sadness start to go.

The largest release came when we went into the iron pool. There are several different pools based on what minerals are present. Iron felt best in my body. The floor was natural pebbles and the water bubbled up from them. I felt still but playful in that pool. And then we went back to the mud one more time... and it was done. I keep hearing that dear woman's voice in my head, "playfulness will heal the wound" and I'll be damned if she's not completely spot on. The more fun we have the more freedom I feel and the easier it is for me to breathe.

mud bathsIt was a no phone zone but I was so thankful to see a rule breaker there who happily took our photo and texted it to me! I love a rule breaker, don't you! That suit top used to be white.

The next day I felt really quiet. Deeply quiet.

I've been observing, experiencing and though I would still really love a solid nights rest, I am happy. There's been no feeling of "are we healed yet" no force, no struggle, no expectation. Just fun. We wake up each day and decide where we will go next. Literally on the spot. Sometimes we start driving, map out a few routes via the trusty iPhone and then decide. And that feels just right.

Over and out from the road, Lacy