How do you know when a chapter has come to an end; and how do you rally the courage to write a new one?
Twenty-five years ago somewhere, deep in my mind's creative lobe, I designed a home that checked all my boxes. It was to be a getaway in the mountains of Vermont but turned into much more; this house became my passion. In just a few short years this dream project went from my imagination to an actual blueprint, to breaking ground. I was involved in every aspect of the design and building process, and loved every second. Nothing was done by chance, everything was intentional, right down to squirreling away crystals in the walls to ensure good vibes.
My son was eight when we first walked the land, we imagined all that we would do on the vast rolling expanse. He was the one that named the property, Wildside, after Lou Reed's classic hit, Walk on the Wild Side. How fitting a name. Over the next twenty plus years we celebrated every holiday in this glorious home, enjoyed all the seasonal activities the Green Mountains had to offer, became an eager student of the mysteries of the woods, and raised 3 Newfoundland dogs, as I watched my son grow into a confident married man, now living aboard.
In the silence of the star filled evenings of Vermont, I now find myself asking the question, in my life's story, is the chapter titled Wildside coming to an end?
It's easy to stay put, to keep the status quo, but at what cost? Would I forfeit my next chapter because I am be too comfortable? Am I shying away from new challenges as the years roll by?
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived... I did not wish to live what was not life... nor did I wish to practice resignation... I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life." ~ Thoreau
I'm not done challenging myself, no matter how titanic the decision of selling the family home is. Growth comes in the uncomfortable and challenging spaces, and the day I stop venturing into uncharted waters, I might as well just pack it in.
So how does anyone say goodbye to a home that has protected you from the fierce winters, warmed you with its crackling fire, cooled you with its glistening pond in the summer heat, and fed the souls of all that crossed its threshold? I don't have the answer, but what I can tell you is, making the decision is heart wrenching.
“I've been absolutely terrified every moment of my life and I’ve never let it keep me from doing a single thing that I wanted to do.” ~ Georgia O'Keeffe
Am I ready to write a new chapter? Are any of us really ready?
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