I can hardly believe how this has happened! Suddenly I’m walking around town and there’s Christmas lights everywhere and the shops are full of festivities and every child I hear speaking, is talking about what Santa will be bringing them. Wow! This really is speaking of something I never saw coming. How unplanned this is - but then again, I had no plans to start with.
4 whole months ago I came back to Ireland, I got off a Ryan Air flight, and I’ll never forget the feeling of Irish summer air that hit me - with the clouds sitting so snugly on the terminal building. My Mam asked: “So Niamh, how long do we have you for… A week?” I was afraid to answer, because I didn’t have a clue. Mam was putting as little pressure on me as possible, so as to still give me the freedom to stay or to move, without the guilt of visiting either too short or too long. Nobody here at home had any expectations, neither did I - and this “common ground” in family relations is such a precious thing to have…
Anyhow, the season that I was initially reluctant to experience here in Ireland this year, has suddenly started. And it’s been the thing that’s forced me to make a decision for the first time in ages. Up until 2 weeks ago, I kept on flowing and had no plans. Even though I was constantly eager to move, so I could focus on travel, as well as eager to ground myself, so I could focus on writing. Such a contradiction was going, because I was so afraid I’d loose my passion for travel by totally giving way to something I’ve been wanting to do for the past year and half. And by possibly hitting the road I was afraid I’d loose my passion for writing something more than this blog contains. Either way, one thing has been happening and I’ve managed to ground myself in the process that is now ongoing. And I can honestly say, there’s no stopping me now!
Getting slightly sidetracked… Christmas…: to be or not to be? I had to make some sort of a decision 2 weeks ago - at least for as far as the next 6 weeks are concerned. It felt like such a big one though! I’d been pushing the decision away and didn’t want to think about it. But time stands still for nobody and it was approaching! The thoughts of ‘committing’ to staying up until the end of December were making me panic and I felt like a failure for still being here, because I initially was only passing through! I really had a mental block I needed to remove, which was actually easily done once I thought rationally about how far along I was with the writing and about what organizing would be involved, if I really wanted to get myself on the road before Christmas. I found myself secretly setting goals that wouldn’t be achievable, even if I worked day and night… This would have meant the love for the work I’m doing would be out the window and my brain would probably have crashed and burnt! And for what? For who? Just to prove that I didn’t want or need to be here for the festive season? Just to prove that I’m still ’travelling’? When rationality hit and I placed both feet on the ground (all for 15 whole minutes) I realized that I can experience Christmas with my precious family, share in the love and see the materialistic values and needs simply as the way in which the world works, whether I like it or not! Because really it’s a special time of year and I don’t need to reject it, just to keep myself distant from values in life that are determined by the amount of money that’s spent, instead of the amount of love that’s shared!
So, yes I’ve decided to stay until after Christmas, and I’m happy to do so. I know in my heart that I can’t let myself move freely or go anywhere until I’ve totally completed this part of my journey (the book). I don’t like to over-emphasize what I’m doing, but it’s happening either way. I reckon by speaking about it so much, I’m making it even more real. Others are encouraging me, which I also use as a positive drive to keep my flow going. Because, yes, the story is unfolding and it excites me so much and the fact that I’m here at this time of year, I can choose to see as an extra bonus. Because I don’t know where I’ll be over the next year. I know so little really. But knowing so little is why life is so exciting and it’s where we can embrace every moment, because we don’t know how long it will last or if it will ever be experienced again. It’s why my everyday is so unique when I sit down to write in the mornings; it’s unknown what will happen on the screen of the computer as my imagination takes me everywhere, just from the chair that sits behind the desk. I just realized: Being grounded here in Ireland - through writing each day - is giving me all the flights and travels I need which will sustain me until this chapter is done! This is truly proof that we can be happy anywhere in the world, as long as we’re doing what we love doing most.