We’re in the final Monday of March, Women & Womxn—it’s pretty amazing! Thank goodness Spring is here; it just feels like a blossoming time in so many ways.
I went to India over ten years ago and haven’t forgotten the trip. It was life-changing, in ways, but not in the way I thought it would be. In 2010, I was wrapping up my MSW program and it was a toss-up between traveling and volunteering in Dharamsala or enrolling in a yoga teaching program in Arizona. At the time, it seemed like India was the best choice because who knows what would happen in the years ahead.
Able to stay a few weeks, I worked with children in a school setting, and had enough time to sample the culture(s) to an extent. Anyone who says you can go to a big ol’ geography like that, with multitudes of peoples, and do cultural immersion in days or even weeks… I don’t know if it’s possible. 🙂 I felt like every individual, family, and community that I saw had their own stories to tell.
No denying it: traveling halfway across the globe definitely brought me out of my shell big time. With no family or friends with me, it was a large leap of faith. To be 100% authentic, I was looking for myself. I was looking for who I was on a deeper level…
Do you take those trips, too? Or do you try to make choices or have experiences to feel fulfilled or find fulfillment? That was my “goal.” And did I find it? Yes and no…
Thousands of Miles Across the Globe and Back
After being there for a number of days, waiting for the woosh of divine energy to fill me up, I still wasn’t breaking down inner walls. I didn’t feel much different. I thought to myself, “C’mon, James—it’s India. I’m practicing yoga close to the Dalai Lama’s temple. I’ve witnessed how yoga can be a valuable treatment modality for children [definitely not surprising then or now]. And I’m walking along streets that enlightened monks walk on…”
Honestly, I thought that trip would be my cure, my spark, my change.
Are the following your cure, or change, so to speak? Do you hold onto these below, but you still don’t know who you are?
- Your job
- Your kiddos or other beings that need you
- Perhaps your partner, dater, or spouse
- Where you live
- What your routines are
- The car you drive or the transporation that you take
- Moving to the next place
I don’t know about you, but I came home all the same… I came back to the Midwest and life was still life. WTH?
Where Can We Find Fulfillment?
That trip taught me not only do we have home in our hearts, but we also have fulfillment already present within. It’s just waiting for us to notice it. And yes, trips or experiences definitely help us grow. And I’m not discounting home, or comforts, or spaces of peace–>definitely not. I’m simply explaining that if we take Item A and think it’ll change our life forever, it may or may not.
For me, I wasn’t cured of heartaches or experiences the second the plane touched down in Delhi and then when pulling into Dharamsala. It didn’t happen with playing and working with the children on their schoolwork or art (though they were so cool). Fulfillment or happiness was already present, deep down. But I’ve had to tear down my walls brick by brick and experience by experience to let it grow and shine through. It wasn’t a one-trip-and-done deal for me; it’s been years of work, walking, and healing [and I’m still not done yet]. More importantly, I looked outward at other things to fulfill me when I should’ve been looking inside the whole time.
Maybe This is It… Nope. How About This? Eh, Nope.
The post today isn’t about tactics or tips this time… And it’s not as long as some of the last ones but I wanted to plant a seed of pondering today.
Being reminded of Holi and India made me think of how we don’t have to look ahead, somewhere else, or outward, to find ourselves. I just talked about this a couple weeks ago, but it seems worth repeating in a new way. Try to not push yourself into experiences thinking, “THIS is my fulfillment… Or this will fulfill me or show me my way.” Darling, you, as a divine being are your fulfilling tonic. We may be our own barrier sometimes or we might believe we’re not enough… Or, we can go seek guru after guru… But try to recognize that you are enough. Even if you don’t believe it sometimes, I believe it and I’ll keep believing in you, for you, as long as you need. Namaste.
Does this topic resonate with you? Have you taken trips like this or tried to go “find yourself,” only to come back and be in the same spot? With the same feelings? If that doesn’t resonate: what do you think about “finding” your fulfillment in yourself or seeking it out in other places? If you want to write privately, here’s the way to contact me 1:1 or feel free to leave a comment below.