We’ve been on a cross-country road trip for the past week or so, finally landing in the Pacific North West for an extended stay for the summer, then we traverse back across the country to land in the midwest again before school starts.
This has been in the works for over a year. Last summer we had a family vacation planned that suddenly got canceled due to the airline we were using and it kind of fell apart. Then my brother moved his family away and I fell apart.
I started researching this idea to relocate for this summer then and had to sell the idea to Aaron. I came up with a plan to save for the trip and the rough outline of what it would look like if just the kids and I did this, or if Aaron wanted to come too. And it changed a lot over the last year from conception to actually renting a house and driving across the country. We kept it a secret from the kids for 11 of then 12 months and worked hard to make this happen.
Then we woke up last Friday morning and left. Aaron had a fever over 100 for the first 5 days, I drove 90% of the trip out here. We lived through high winds, 100 degree weather days, cold nights, a thunderstorm every single day on the trip out here, over 2,700 miles, pulling a popup camper through the Black Hills and not entirely knowing what we were doing at any given moment.
But it’s been amazing.
I had all these grand ideas about writing a poem every day for the entire summer, then I was the one in charge of driving and I only just opened my journals to write the other day. I’ve written one. But I have more in me.
My expectations have been countlessly revised to meet with the realities of this trip. Of the actual movement, as well as the ideal outcome – and I’ve come to the happy place of taking what comes.
Yesterday we walked to my grandparents house and the vault inside of me opened. My grandma walked me around her garden telling me about her roses and flowers. What went wild, what she did or didn’t plant, who bought what for her and when. My grandpa told us he’d take us fishing and show me how to smoke my catch, then he let my kids ride the 4-wheeler and Jessica found my grandma’s piano and started pecking at the keys and everything made sense.
I came back to
the one place we
can all agree
belongs to me.
My varied history, nomadic pattern of history. A vagabond heart with a patchwork family … this place, this place doesn’t change. This place is one place I can always come home to.