The Whole Truth

Jan 02

2010

In Search of Community …

by Alexis Martin Neely - Posted in Life, Pursuit of Happyness, Values, Waking Up |

looking-backIt’s the eve of moving day.

Tomorrow, we will pull out of Hermosa Beach and head toward the Rockies with two U-Hauls, 5 adults (including my ex-husband and my boyfriend), 2 kids, a dog, 3 cats, a snake and a turtle.

Thank God I’ve got two years of Burning Man under my belt as practice.

I’m quite surprised about how shaken up I am by this whole move.  Although everyone I talk to says it’s totally normal and I know it is, I’m still surprised.

The move is bringing me the opportunity to confront all the  pieces of myself that I don’t love and adore.  And most importantly, to see them.

There’s so much that we hide from ourselves.  And it all comes up during any period of transition and transformation.

What’s coming up for me now is the awareness that I am deeply motivated by the desire to have a certain community of people around me.

I moved to a Hermosa Beach walkstreet because I wanted to raise my kids in community.  I wanted to live somewhere in which the kids could run back and forth to their friends’ houses without constant adult supervision.  An open door policy in which my neighbor’s kids would become as comfortable with me as my own kids and my kids would look to the neighbors as second parents.

When I first moved to Hermosa, I lived on 17th street, one of the walkstreets where community is facilitated by no cars driving on the street in front of the houses.

There were two families on the street that had been there for more than 50 years.  The adults living there now had all grown up as kids on the street (and in the houses) where they were now raising their own kids.

Over the years, those friends had turned into each other’s  family.

It’s always been what I wanted.  A family by choice.  An extended group of people who become family, are  committed to supporting each other and working together for the benefit of the whole.  Each person contributing his and her highest gifts to the community and relaxing into the awareness that her or she is part of a greater village working toward a common vision.

Raising kids, cooking meals, relaxing, and growing together.  People who share my values.  That I want my kids to be guided by and learning from.

When I really look at why I am moving to Colorado, I’m heading off in search of that village.

My mind begins to wonder why I didn’t create it here and what will be different there.

There are three families on my street, all of whom have kids Kaia and Noah’s age, all of whom go to the private school Kaia and Noah used to go to.

On the surface, the village I’m looking for is right here.

But, we don’t seem to fit with these families.

They are nice enough, but I don’t see them ever feeling like real I’ve got your back no matter what family.  They aren’t people I could practice Radical Honesty with or talk about evolution of the spirit and truth and awareness with.  They seem to like living behind the veil. Or at least, it’s all they know and they seem happy enough to keep it on.

I’m ready to pull off the veil.  And so I’m leaving.

My mind says I’m crazy.  I should make it work here.  If I can’t make it work here, I won’t make it work anywhere.  It’s the same everywhere.  Wherever you go, there you are.  Stick it out.  Push through.

But, then I remember back to being at the big law firm.

I had many of these same thoughts then.  You are crazy to think about leaving.  People would kill for that job. Are you insane?  Make it work.  If you can’t make it work here, you won’t make it work anywhere.  This is just what life is like.  Wherever you go, there you are.  Stick it out.  Push through.

The exact same thoughts.  A pattern.  Conditioning.  Had I listened to them, I’d still be there, unhappy, wondering what’s wrong with me.  But, hanging in.

As soon as I left the big law firm, I found a freedom unlike anything I had ever experienced before.  I didn’t run out of money.  I didn’t die.  Instead, I was free.

That freedom led to where I am today.  I can pick up and move to a completely different State.  I don’t have to worry about finding a new job. I don’t have to worry about taking vacation time to pack and move.  I don’t have to worry that I won’t be able to make a living where I am going.

The only restriction on me today is my mind.  It sometimes still wants to hold me back, keep me safe, convince me that if only I changed, I would find out that what I’m looking for has been here all along.

But, here’s what I know.  Something is pulling me to Colorado.

It’s something as big as the freedom that came through when I left my paycheck and started my own business.  It’s something as big as the freedom that showed up when I left my husband and re-discovered the freedom of being a woman again.

I have a feeling it’s that I will finally find the community I’ve been looking for.  The community that becomes family.  The community that sees me exactly as I am, recognizes me and says yes, you are one of ours.   We’ve been waiting for you.

Image courtesy of Flickr