I live alone. I like living alone. I even like to travel alone but interestingly enough, all the trips this year are with other people. Each travel adventure has come into my life as an opportunity presented to me by another person. And since I love to travel and I love to expand my own inner personal horizons, I said "yes" to every opportunity. And as I'm writing this, I'm remembering the message I received a couple days ago - the one about bridging the gap between opposites - and I realize that my ability to interact with another person in close proximity on a daily basis may be the true ADVENTURE of every one of these trips.
The first travel opportunity begins February 4. I'll fly to Los Angeles, stay overnight, then board the Coral Princess on February 5 for a 15 day cruise that stops in three locations in Mexico, three in Panama during which time we'll traverse the Panama Canal, (can't wait), then continue on to one-day destinations in Costa Rica, Colombia, and Aruba, ending up in Ft. Lauderdale on February 20. We'll leave the Coral Princess and board a Holland America ship the same day. Then cruise the Caribbean Islands for 7 days, returning to Ft. Lauderdale February 27, where we'll stay for a couple nights to get our land legs back before going our separate ways.
And what are these fears that are popping in and out? Well, I'm going to be sharing a teeny, tiny cabin onboard a ship with a friend for almost four weeks. I'm wondering if we'll still be friends in March. I do really well when I visit family but that's comfortable and I spend a few nights here and a few nights there among four children. We seem to fall right back into our respective roles and enjoy the time we have together. I've spent long periods of time with my sister and that's no problem at all. We're so used to each other. But this experience will be with someone I know very little about, at least in the living together every day, 24/7, way.
My friend and I have discussed the fact that we don't have to be glued together the whole time. It's a big ship. He and I both like our own space and we are both willing to go our separate ways when we need time to ourselves, without it being offensive to the other person. And before you conjure up any ideas about the he and the me going on this trip, my friend likes men.
Little thoughts creep in today to let me know that I do have some concerns about our togetherness. Mostly about myself. Actually, all about myself. Really dumb things like, "What if I snore?" I woke myself up the other night snoring. I better get some of those breathing strips. "Will I scare him in the morning?" I don't like to look at myself first thing. I even hung a curtain over the mirrored closet so I won't see myself getting out of bed in the morning. "How do I look presentable in pj's?" The girls don't ride high when the hardware is removed. Will it be a pain to dress inside the bathroom the whole time? OMG what if I'm seasick and stink up the bathroom or, even worse, throw up in front of him! How big is a stateroom? Will we be bumping into each other constantly? I mean really, do others even concern themselves with these things. Well, women might, but men? I think NOT!
The really dumb thing is that these kinds of thoughts would nag at me whether I was traveling with a woman or a man. When I travel alone, I'm footloose and fancy free. I'm used to doing what I want, when I want. My personal habits and foibles aren't of noticeable concern to me until I know I'm going to display them in front of another person. I manage to be respectable when I'm with other people but it's for a couple hours at a time. Anyone can manage that. These weird thoughts haunt me when I think about spending entire days with another person. Nothing but old patterns rearing their ugly heads - first of all, wanting everyone to like me and then thinking that I have to be perfect in order for them to like me. Just bein' real, here!
Then I do my morning toning meditation and all of these concerns fly out the window on the wings of my voice. The excitement of a new adventure returns. I feel the contact between my friend and myself energetically and I know that it's all going to be purely F-U-N no matter what happens. And I can't wait to meet all the other people onboard the ship and in the ports along the way. New interactions. New relationships. New energy impacts. New experiences. New life. All coming together in dizzying ways. And I know deep inside myself that in one way or another I'll expand and grow from the interactions I have with every person I meet, from every place that I visit and most especially from daily life with my friend. And let's face it, our focus will be on enjoying ourselves, not paying bills, etc.
And I recognize that I, too, will provide an opportunity of personal expansion for all the people I meet along the way. What could be more fulfilling than that! Thanks, Saturn, for showing up today and nudging these silly fears out of my system. When I return to Boulder in March, I'll still know who I AM but I won't be the same person who leaves here February 4. And I can't wait to discover the new me along the way.
BTW. A couple people said they tried to respond and it didn't work. I'm trying to figure out why but I'm new to blogging so it could take awhile. The button is clicked that says "Allow Responses." You might need to set up a google account. If you can't respond online and you want to, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, some people have asked about toning. Email me at email@example.com with your questions and I'll be happy to answer them or give you information.