John Taylor lost track of himself for a while, but after a visit to the ER with chest pains, he is reconnecting with himself.
“All of life is a coming home. Salesmen, secretaries, coal miners, beekeepers, sword swallowers, all of us. All the restless hearts of the world, all trying to find a way home. It’s hard to describe what I felt like then. Picture yourself walking for days in the driving snow; you don’t even know you’re walking in circles. The heaviness of your legs in the drifts, your shouts disappearing into the wind. How small you can feel, and how far away home can be.” – Patch Adams (movie quote)
I have felt lost for quite some time. Lost within myself. Lost to myself. Lost in worldly things. Lost to the world. Life seems to add just one thing after another to a point that I feel like I am going to break under the pressure and the mounting responsibilities. The whole journey of life, trying to find my way home, and home has seemed so far away.
Yet, they always say that home is where the heart is. I don’t know if I had lost my heart, or I just wasn’t following it. But the pathway home, and the realization of where “home” really is, has become a lot clearer in the last few weeks. Now the journey begins to pick back up, brush off the dust and dirt, and carry on.
Thursday evening I found myself sitting in the ER after dealing with chest pains for a few weeks. By the time I ended up going, it was painful to even take deep breaths, and I couldn’t even wash my dishes Thursday morning before I had to sit down and rest. That day I finally decided enough was enough and it was time for getting something figured out.
Tests and x-rays showed that smoking has started to do its damage, and there is no longer any more time to think about quitting. It is time to quit period. I don’t think I will forget what the doc said before I was discharged that night. “Your choices are pretty clear. Quit smoking, increase your chance of stopping it in its tracks. Or go light up when you leave, and before long, I will be seeing you on a monthly basis.” Scary words to hear from a doc. Especially when you aren’t even 30 yet.
It was this night when I realized where my home really is. My life, my world, my family, my friends, my job. The things I love, the things I hate. The things I enjoy, the things I despise. All of them, make up my home. For my heart is here. It’s with me. My heart is with my family, it dwells in the company of friends. I followed the wrong path for so long, that I forgot what it was like to follow my heart.
Today was a new gift. A new day was granted to me to be lived and to be loved. To dwell in my heart and live in the beauty that it knows. To love my family and to know their love. To love and hear my friends, and to know that people genuinely care. To love myself, and know that it is key to loving everything about my world. My home.
The long road home is paved with speed bumps. None of them too high, yet none short enough to not notice. The road to loving myself, loving my life, and living it in this love, is the road I turned off of long ago. I haven’t followed my heart, which I must do now. Where does it take me? Well. I don’t know. But I know if it feels like home, then it’s right where I need to be.
Photo courtesy of Jennifer Juniper mom