As the people who consistently read this blog know, I just finished living in a foreign country for almost eleven months. Coming back was actually easier than I thought it was going to be, probably because, while the city I was temporarily living in did come to feel like my home, I have lived in my US city for my entire life, and you can’t replace it. So coming home felt like coming to another familiar place. Then, shortly after I came home, I got engaged, and got a part-time job, and things have been just flying around at the speed of light. And maybe I never really got a chance to feel loss.
Now, though, I’ve been away from my foreign country and my foreign friends for a month and a half, and it’s starting to feel difficult. I’ve been trying to keep in contact with them, but I’ll never carve out as much time here as I spent with them there. I saw some of my friends maybe three or four times a week when I was there, and here I’m lucky if I get to call or text them once a week.
So, therein lies the question I’d like to pose today: How does loss impact your path? How can you make it something constructive?
I wish that loss was one of those things that made people really motivated to do stuff, but as I recall BBC’s Sherlock saying in A Study in Pink, sadness is a paralytic (therefore ruling out that the cabbie would kill people because he was also dying, but that’s neither here nor there). So certainly for me, I’ve noticed that while I’ve been home, I haven’t done much with my path. I’ve been trying to write on this blog, certainly, but my practice has dropped off sharply. That probably has many reasons (one of them being that I’m now living in the same house with my mother, brother, and two long-term house guests) but who’s to say one of them isn’t that I’m kind of sad about leaving my friends behind? I mean, they even made a video for me that had interviews with all of them, and pictures and videos, and it made me cry in the airport. Now I’m trying to make a video compilation of my experience there, and it’s not helping me cope either.
So on to the more important question of the two: how can you make it something constructive? Short of making an inevitably creepy shrine for my friends and burning incense for them or something, I have just one idea. Rather than think about how the loss of friends affects my practice, I should think about how having those friends affected my practice. And it should be a motivator for me to stay in contact with them (because I am the worst at keeping in touch with people).
I know it’s not very much for today, and perhaps not very much insight for any of you, but I’ve definitely got a lot on my plate (as you can probably tell). Thank you to everyone who does read this blog. (You rock.)