Hello dear readers. It's so lovely to sit here with some time, to be uninterrupted, to say hello and to write to you. How have you been? Are you and your families doing well this holiday season? I'm still based in Germany, yet I have finally felt a bit of "homesick" fever lately... I guess it's just that despite living abroad for over 6 years, you still remember your roots, your childhood memories of what certain seasons felt like, and there are always bits of you that you feel like you'd left behind in your former life. I remember reading once that it's one thing to move from one state to another in the same country - difficult and exciting of course, but the writer had said that moving from one country and one culture to another, an ocean apart (not even on the same continent) and you will have a whole new reality to face each day and it never will feel exactly like the life you once knew. And that you would never be "that" person again, if you did move back to your homeland. Wow. I discredited this when I first read it years ago, but today I feel like that writer knew something I had yet to learn.
I wonder about the importance humans place on the physical location of where we live. Yet it isn't really just physical, is it? Memories, language, religion, the people who influence us, the light, the natural surroundings, the energy in the air... It's so much more than just a spot in which you sit - there is so much emotion in where we live or have lived that connects us.
I often feel like I have no real home. Yet I have the ability to quickly adjust and see the best in every place I've ever lived. I've moved a lot in the states (over 35 times, not always by choice), from the north to the midwest to the south to the north... And then over to Germany, and I sometimes feel like I have a bit of an identity crisis when it comes to where I really belong or where I feel the most comfortable. But it always comes down to this: I feel the most attached to where the ocean is.
The sea is the one spot on this planet that gives me all of the memories of my childhood instantly without having to be on the actual coast I grew up on. My good friend recently mentioned jumping in the car and just driving away as far as possible and I added, "to the sea... I would get out, sit on the sand and look into the water and feel at home again." I really mean that.
I can be on any beach, in any part of the world, and feel a connection as strong as if I stood on the very beach I played on as a little girl. I remember once being in Santa Monica, looking out into the sea, and instantly feeling like my mother was about to tap my shoulder. Yet, she and I never lived in Santa Monica and she's never been to the west coast. We never shared a moment on the Pacific ocean before. Yet, it felt like we had been to this beach a thousand times because back in South Carolina, we had stood on the coastline for years enjoying the comforts of beach days and sunsets, jumping the waves and collecting shells.
Life is such a beautiful thing, which can also be painful at times. Painful especially at times when you are homesick, or missing someone, or simply wondering where life is taking you because you're not sure you want to go in that direction any longer. For this holiday season, I cannot honestly admit that I am enjoying it as I have in the past. There is a bit of an empty space currently and I'm wondering how to fill it, what to do, how to figure out how to bridge the gap of being homesick, missing the sea, feeling a bit like my dreams of what family means isn't really working out according to plan (they live everywhere, no one seems to have time for getting together, family politics, differing religions, ugh.).
Right now I feel a bit disconnected from all of the holiday cheer. I feel a bit like I am on the other side of the glass looking in.
So for this season, I will step outside of my own feelings and work to appreciate what I do have, give to others as much as I can, and put on the Holly smile (as my mother always called it) and try not to think so hard or be as intense as I can be at times. I also want to give as much as I can to my darling little son because he means the world to me, he is my greatest gift in life so far. I want to just relax, put on some lovely music, light candles, bake cookies and have people over to bring love in. To make it seem like home isn't so far away. To feel a bit of the connection that I long for so much...
And by the way, if you feel any of these feelings... Please know that I hold your hand in mind right now and send you good, positive energy. All will be fine, we have the power to wish away the sad and bring in the beautiful light. You just have to open your eyes and see what is there instead of what is not there. And look, there is some mistletoe below... So find someone to kiss for me and share a special moment that will bring some red to your cheeks and warmth to your soul. Oftentimes the right person, a sensitive touch, a warm embrace... It can heal you and pain floats away.
I wish you all a lovely, beautiful holiday. I wish you a happy new year and a beautiful 2016! I will be back to blogging shortly after the new year, I have so much to tell you from a career and blog perspective that you will love to hear. I have so much going on that is positive for both cattledogs and me - and my 4th book releases next year too and I can't wait to talk more about that because it's such a beautiful book filled with so much positivity and joy.
Love to you all, Holly x
(photography: holly becker)