I have spent the better part of the last two days alone. Brilliant sunshine and calm winds found me walking to the lighthouse, collecting treasures along the harbor, walking the labyrinth and watching the sun fall behind the mountains. I enjoyed the solitude after the last two weeks visiting with friends. It gave me space to reflect.
I have been living in Dingle for six months already. Hardly seems possible. Time is passing so quickly. A pang of sadness gripped me for a moment at the labyrinth when I realized the time will come when I have to say goodbye to this place and its people. And I was reminded of those that I had to say goodbye to in order to come here.
Living in a different country than most of my family and friends allows for a certain space to notice connection in a new way. For example, my 85 year old father told us recently that he's lonely and he missed seeing us through skype after screwing up his computer. Things he never would've said if we hadn't left the country. My dear friend whom I havent seen in years now makes time to skype weekly with me allowing me not only to see her but to hear her fabulous laugh. I'm surprised too by certain other people who take the time to reach out to me. For example, a woman I worked with for just a short time continues to send cards in the mail just to say hello. An old friend who writes to me regularly brings a smile to my face everytime the post is delivered. A former student somehow makes time in her incredibly busy life to read these blogs and email me with her heartfelt responses, encouraging me to keep writing. The busy vet who regularly takes time to send me pictires of Fergus knowing how much I miss him and friends who text or email just to say hi. In fact, just this minute I was called away by the doorbell ringing. It was the post man with a package from two former students. Abeautiful crystal gift to say that they miss me and hope I am well. Amazing. It all reminds me just how meaningful a seemingly simple thing can be. In the past I, like many, have had limited connection with people I care about under the excuse of a busy life. It's now, through these reminders that I realize just how easy it is to send a quick text, email or voicemail to say "hi, was thinking of you." Particularly in this age of technology.
I'm reminded of a quote that pops up on social media from time to time. I believe the author is Robert Tew. Anyway, it reads: "Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you or makes you happy." I always associated that with letting go of negativity or toxic people. I understand now that it applies to anything or anyone who no longer brings light into your life. This can even mean people you care deeply for and who in turn care for you, but no longer nourish you in healthy ways. A painful lesson perhaps, but once learned allows for so much abundance. I am grateful that such abundance is flowing to me from afar, and too from right here in Dingle. I have been fortunate enough to meet a new friend here who not only makes sure I have the best photos for my book, takes me to places of beauty I otherwise wouldn't see, but who also inspires me to be my best me everytime I speak with her.
I'm fortunate that I made this journey possible and am able to reflect, and learn more about me and my connection in the world. I am grateful for and honored by the people who help me grow and hope that I am making the time to let them each know how much I appreciate their presence in my life.