Finding Presence Amidst the Planning

Mexico has made it quite difficult for us to leave thus far. We tried to go to central America back in March but Guatemala chewed us up and spat us out (a little older and and wiser, I might add). When we crossed back over the border after an immensely confusing and challenging time with Tyrhone’s paramotor training, I could have kissed the ground.

I think I may have, actually.

It’s no secret I love this country. We both do. The natural landscape, the food, the ancient cultures and the sheer variation of experiences it offers travelers must surely be one of the world’s best kept secrets (thank you, Fox News).

We have traversed this fine country from the Yucatan, to Chiapas, Campeche, Mexico City, Oaxaca, San Miguel de Allende, Guadalajara, Nayarit, Jalisco and a thousand tiny towns in between. We’ve scaled ancient pyramids, eaten exquisite foods and swam in fresh water sink holes.

Aktun Chen cenote

Palenque Chiapas

I jumped out of a freaking plane which was something I never thought I would do. Best of all I was able to introduce my Mum, my sister and Tyrhone’s sister to this country which they loved as much as us.

mum and me

My Mum and I in Oaxaca City

El taj jacuzzi

Tyrhone and Taunee livin’ it up

whale shark boat

On our way to swim with whale sharks with Holly…

We’ve relaxed, stressed, fought, loved, enjoyed, connected and discovered.

We found an unexpected home on the road in Playa del Carmen; a place our hearts reside in even when we are not there. Don’t get me started on the people I met there or I’ll cry.

Me Jorge Alison

While we know that one day we will return, for now, a new adventure beckons.

The last time we were in the states, I wasn’t ready for it. Looking back, I was actually quite stubborn in my resistance to being there because I had ‘my’ central and South American road trip dream firmly embedded in my brain.

It actually contributed to the strife we got into in Guatemala because I hadn’t been open to our plans changing. If we had stayed in the states longer, Tyrhone would have had more training and experience and we wouldn’t have had to rely on someone we didn’t know to give him more training.

The universe took care of it all in the end and taught me some very painful and valuable lessons about being open to what is rather than what I think they should be. I learned the hard way that flexibility is always better than rigidity when it comes to what I want.

Truth be told, I don’t know what is best for me. What I have received is always better than what I wanted and if I had only ever gotten what I wanted in life, I’d have sold myself short on the life which is actually available to me.

Which is why, even though I am excited about our upcoming plans – road tripping through Arizona, visiting my sister in Vegas, camping in the Grand Canyon and Yosemite National Park, visiting my friend Sam in San Francisco, house sitting stints in Montana, Washington state and Colorado – I realise that nothing actually exists except each moment I find myself in.

Colorado Rockies

And those moments are likely to be very different to what I’ve experienced so far…

I don’t want to get lost in plans again. I don’t want to pin my happiness on a future event, because I’ve learned that life is about being present where I am. In fact, the only place I can ever be open to what life is teaching me is here, now.

The lure of travel and adventure can become as much of a drug as anything else, and don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad vice to have. But this journey has taken me across the globe and thrust me into so many surreal and crazy situations to show me that the fulfillment I seek from life is always within me, waiting patiently, while I run around looking for it outside of myself.

Connecting with the power and peace within me has been my main focus since Guatemala. Maybe you think I am crazy writing about consciousness, meditation, awareness and eternity, but as someone who has falled and fumbled my whole life in search of the missing piece, to realise it was inside me all along is the greatest gift I have ever received.

Every day I am humbled and awed in the face of it and so utterly, completely grateful for the internal adventure I am on.

I have no doubt there will be more mistakes, more pain and more lessons in my future. Getting out of my comfort zone again in the states will challenge me as well as us as a couple.

But no matter what happens, I will continue to show up in each moment with as much presence as I can muster, with the knowledge that wherever I am – mentally, emotionally, physically – is exactly where I am meant to be.

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Finding Presence Amidst the Planning — 35 Comments

  1. Please, let us know when you plan to be in CO. Maybe we can meet up with you and Thyrone.

  2. The Galactic School of Lessons clearly has us enrolled in the same course because I’m going through this exact same thing. I haven’t spoken about it on my blog or any social media yet but the arse has fallen out of my plans this week. I feel positive about it, and I’m sure what the universe has for me in our new direction is going to be better, and deep down I realise it’s what I wanted all along anyway. But it hasn’t come without quite a few tears; tears caused because I had such an attachment to what I thought was going to come to pass.
    Karyn @ Not Done Travelling recently posted..Paddling To A Revelation In Phang Nga BayMy Profile

    • It reminds me of the Rolling Stones song Karyn!! Yes, I am sure you are being guided to something better. I know it’s hard to remember that at the time though.

  3. Although we won’t focus on the planning :) it sounds like there are many exciting things ahead in your future! I’m hoping the US will welcome you with open arms and, unlike last time, you will open yourself to it and find still more insight. Can’t wait to finally see you in person! XOXO
    Rhonda recently posted..Clear LakeMy Profile

  4. Thoughtful post, Sarah. I can relate to certain aspects as I am one who is always 3 steps ahead of myself, constantly forgetting to live in the moment. When I stop and tune in, I find such joy. And sometimes challenges, but usually joy. I don’t believe in regrets, they’re a waste of time so I just keep moving forward. Abi and I have been on this journey for 36 years and even the everyday living was an adventure. Now we find ourselves just 6 days away from making probably the most dynamic change to our lives, which is gloriously full of unknowns and I couldn’t be more excited. Aside from setting up a home base in Rockville, MD, near our son and daughter-in-law, we have no specific plans and I couldn’t be happier. I’m tired of planning and worrying about whether or not said plans will come to fruition. Now, it’s just about seeing where the universe takes us. And I’m excited for you to experience the U.S. The parts of the country you mentioned are all wonderful, the Grand Canyon is beyond words and Yosemite, well… you’ll see! 😉 Safe travels!
    Patti recently posted..Going With the Flow ~My Profile

    • 36 years is amazing, Patti, good on you! Yes, you are in the midst of massive change. I think moments of presence are enough when you are so busy planning. Plans are good, exciting and transformative. I think the key is putting them in place but being open to the outcome, which it sounds like you absolutely are. I wish you and Abi the very best on your new adventure! xoxox

  5. Major a-ha right now: “Truth be told, I don’t know what is best for me. What I have received is always better than what I wanted and if I had only ever gotten what I wanted in life, I’d have sold myself short on the life which is actually available to me.”

    I’m going to reflect on this… write about all the things I *wanted* to happen, but where the Universe had other plans. You’re right… we would sell ourselves short… <3
    Kristen recently posted..Bring it to light (a creative project to transform negative beliefs)My Profile

  6. Too true Sar! I can totally relate to worrying about what could happen and losing the joy of what is actually happening. Ah tis a funny old life indeed! Enjoy the States my love. Can’t wait to read about the adventures! X

    • Thank you so much Eggy! I will never be present all the time, but I am attempting to catch myself when I drift into worry or fear and just say, “Be here, now.” I try to take in the sounds, smells, sights and impressions of the moment and I immediately feel so grateful for the privelege of being alive. Love ya xoxo

  7. Enjoy the next adventure. One thing I’ve learned the past few years is that making plans and having expectations only leads to disappointment. The world is a lot more open when we are open to it. I can’t wait to read about your experiences here in the U.S. Have a blast!
    Kim recently posted..Hiking Half DomeMy Profile

    • So true Kim! A friend sent me an amazing passage on the difference between expectation and aspiration. It’s on my instagram feed. Defines how different the two feel from each other. Expectation has always led me into pain. Time to give it up!! Xxx

  8. What an adventure. I mean life, not just what you’re doing. Sometimes you have to remember to just hold on for the ride rather than trying too hard to manipulate it. I have to remind myself of that daily. Can’t wait to meet you in person!!!
    Carmel recently posted..IN SEARCH OF THE PERFECT PAELLAMy Profile

  9. As a major planner, I can relate to this…. oh lordy! Such a lesson to show up and be present and … listen. and let it all just be good. I certainly get in the way enough! I can’t wait to keep reading about how you stay in the moment and in the here and now! So exciting!
    Aurora recently posted..Me and 320K* of my closest friendsMy Profile

  10. Wow, what wisdom, about being present, about the moment that is existing right now and its lessons. I’ll have to remember some of that next time I get all swept up into planning the next adventure. Can’t wait to connect in person again soon!
    Sam recently posted..Lessons from backpacking the SierrasMy Profile

  11. Although I have never commented before, I have been following your blog for over 2 years now. It has been great to follow your journey of self discovery and your adventures. I enjoy all your posts and looking forward to this next chapter.

    • It’s SO lovely to hear from you Gilda! Thank you for reading, I appreciate it so much (and also your kind wishes). Much love to you on your own journey xxx

  12. I read your blog and I feel like you are here with us in Montana. I miss you and already can’t wait to see you ! Safe travels…..

  13. What a thoughtful and inspiring read. Leaving a special place has its own perks too. There are so many places and people around the world who have moved me in unforgettable ways, and now no matter where I live, I know there’s more than just once place I can call home :)
    the paper boat sailor recently posted..All’s Well in WeligamaMy Profile

  14. I find it hard not to plan, in fact, I absolutely love to plan but travel has taught me to focus only on planning broad phases; a summer here and an autumn there. I try not to get too bogged down in the details although I don’t sleep easily if I don’t know where I’m going to be during the next few weeks. I’m so excited to read about your US trip; we’re heading there next autumn so it’ll be great inspiration for us!
    Amy recently posted..Changing Direction – Travel Plans for 2015My Profile

  15. AWESOME!!! Just discovered you/your site..Playa pulled me in and enjoying reading of your experiences. But reading your skydiving adventure and seeing the video brought tears. Thank you for sharing!!!

      • This will be our 3rd trip to Playa and look forward to visiting some of the “cheap eats” you wrote about. We’re celebrating my 60th birthday with famiy and friends for a week, then they leave and we have another 15 days to explore paradise on our own. We’re from Arizona..enjoy your adventure when you’re here and if you want any ideas of areas, let me know.