I awoke this morning in a bit of a blue funk. Sometimes it’s hard being on the road, being an island in a sense. We go in and out of people’s lives every few days, stepping into their day-to-day rhythm, passing their local grocery stores, the bank they deposit at every week, the gym whose membership card is slowly deteriorating away in their wallet. We watch from the outside, looking in, and I see them living what I lived two months ago.
And I miss it in a way. Don’t get me wrong, I’m loving this trip. In fact, sometimes I worry that I will never be able to live any other way than this. I mean really, what will I do when after three days and the newness wears off, I can’t lock all my desk drawers, bar the refrigerator door, and sit in “co-pilot” next to Shawn as we rumble down the road to a new, exciting destination. It gets my heart all fluttery just thinking about it.
But I also appreciate the beauty of the routine that I see in the lives of those we visit. Because in routine, you create community. If you eat at the same restaurant every Wednesday morning, you begin to know the people who work there, you establish relationships with the gum-smacking waitress and the bleary-eyed busboy. At the pick-up line at school, you find friendship with the chatty PTA president or the stay-at-home dad who always has the best lunchbox ideas. Or mowing your lawn every Saturday, you find kindred spirits in the neighbors three doors down that now watch your kids while you make an emergency room visit or bring you fresh tortillas and shredded Mexican beef along with tender hugs after you miscarry a baby you loved and lost too quickly.
Those are the things I miss on this trip: I miss tangible friends; I miss familiar grocery aisles; I miss my mail lady with the badly permed hair and cheery smile.
I guess I miss home.