In less than five hours, I will be on a plane to the Philippines. It's astounding even just typing those words, that reality - that decision that I made earlier this year. You may be thinking, "So soon? Weren't you just there like a year ago, Jonathan?" And the answer would be, "Yes." But as I enter the final leg of 2013, and I reflect on the several experiences of loss that have been the seemingly dark thread holding everything together, the importance of family, of connection, and capitalizing on the moments that pass us by so quickly and often before we know it, are lessons that have not been lost on me.
Upon my return, I will look forward to sharing many stories with you: About my amazing three-year old niece and goddaughter who prefers cooking shows in place of bedtime stories, the running joke of opening a cafe with my equally gastronomic sister, of the many new beginnings in the form of babies, unions, and engagements that bring me back to the Islands, visiting the ashes of my grandmother and honoring her spirit, what it was like to eat both gluten-free and vegan despite protestation of my relatives who just want to feed me, and the resurgence of dreams for myself and seizing each moment with both love and compassion. But while I am away, I will do my best to just relax. To take the next three weeks, as jampacked as they may be, and revel in them. And to see the opportunity in unplugging from my phone, from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, my email, from the blog, and to plug into the roots and the history that are calling me. To recharge.
But if you think I am leaving you hanging in the meantime, you would be mistaken. [cue "If You Don't Know Me By Now"...] I have three lovely guest posts from three exceedingly lovely fellow canaries: Cheryl Harris, Rachel Suntop, and Iris Higgins. I love their blogs, their attitudes on living, and I draw support, motivation, and inspiration from each one of them. I hope you will do the same.
So, until my return in mid-October, I wish you Love, Light, and Peace. And I wish for you to find connection, whether with yourself, with dreams and aspirations, with the shadow you try to leave behind, with loved ones who have left your side, with faith, or even simply with your breath, and finding the energy of the spirit in each moment.
It's never too soon.