by Liz Jansen
When I first conceived the notion of writing Women, Motorcycles and the Road to Empowerment in August, 2008, I was energized. It brought together everything I’d done up to that point, and I was excited by what I saw as being able to inspire others through stories from other women riders. Then the reality, and enormity of what I’d accepted as an assignment hit me, but by then I was committed.
I’m feeling much the same about traveling to South America later this year. I know with absolute certainty that it’s what I’m supposed to do, and so I agreed to do it. I’ve learned there’s no point in resisting that inner voice. It only gets louder.
Now the practical reality of what I’m doing is beginning to sink in. It hadn’t occurred to me that it might mean giving up the home I love. There’s a chance I may be able to sublet it, but without knowing when I’ll be back, it makes that idea challenging. Perhaps I’ve become too attached to it and it’s a lesson in letting go. On the other hand, a For Sale – For Development sign just went up on the 89-acre property next door. It makes the leaving easier.
It doesn’t make any sense to keep my car. It’s 10 years old and after sitting idle for up to a year, maybe more, it would be a seized up rust bucket.
For years I’ve been preparing to be able to do my work from anywhere. I never foresaw it coming to this though. On the one hand it’s unsettling. On the other, it’s liberating. In any case, it feels strange to be facing my 60th birthday and divesting myself of what seems like some semblance of security.
Often when I’m come back from travels, I’ve wondered why I live where I do. I could live anywhere, really. The best answer I can find is that I love my home in the cedars here, the community, and the countryside. Where am I going to end up? What will I come back to?
As always when these thoughts pop into my head, I take a step back and check in with my inner guide. I imagine what it would feel like to stay back, and know immediately that it’s not the right thing for me right now. The right thing is to go, even if I don’t know the outcome.
Then I think back to the story told to me recently by my uncle, about my refugee grandparents, steaming to Canada on the SS Minnedosa after years of horrors and loss. Gazing out to the horizon from his deck chair, my grandfather wrote, “I’m going to a strange country, with strange people, and a strange language. What does God possibly have in store for me?” Read: A Gift from the Past and a Lesson on Fear. Those words have come back to me with impeccable timing.
I’m off to research my third book, which I’ll write about in another post. I’m looking forward to traveling to new places, people and perspectives. I’ve started taking Spanish lessons. Hola! And I know that wherever my Road is leading me, it’s right for me. What’s there to fear?