The Art of Missing
I've moved to a different time zone than a lot of my family and friends several times in my life now. This is the first time that I've moved so many time zones away however.
The jet lag was a beast—maybe I'll write about that after I process it a bit more—but also the time difference when communicating with those who care about me takes some getting used to.
I found myself in an infinity pool on the weekend of Week 1 of my year spent living and working in a new city each month. I did my first Facebook Live video, then spent the rest of the day enjoying the pool.
Went to dinner and then out dancing at a spot called the Reggae Mansion—that is neither a mansion nor keen to play reggae music.
When I finally found myself in an Uber and back to a decent WiFi connection, I noticed that I had missed a text from a great friend of mine in Salt Lake City. Then, I saw that the private chat channel that our group of friends uses to communicate had exploded virtually with worries about my safety and whether I was legitimately missing in action.
Oh, the guilt!
I felt incredibly guilty and selfish for not checking in, but simultaneously glad to have had been living in the moment and not recording each joyful moment and fleeting exultation for posterity.
I apologized of course and promised to try to do better and, in response, I heard a lot of "Forgettabbouddit! You're just out living life like you should!" from my friends. A bit of growth on both sides. Certainly not something I was expecting.
I can't help but feel like I've missed thousands of conversations and calls and messages.
I used to wake in the night because of the jet lag, certainly, but also out of the fear of missing something important from the States. Over the short time, that has slowly dissipated and I've found myself getting more comfortable with the discomfort of not knowing.
Not knowing what cute thing my friend’s daughters did that day.
Not knowing what trilogy mom’s reading on or how much it rained, what the conference was like, what a devilish or delicious concoction Pumpkin Spice Lattes are, what my dog Arya did on her walk …
And also trying to get comfortable with the discomfort of knowing.
Knowing what it’s like to feel like I am missing from their lives.
Knowing what it’s like to try and hold these relationships gently and with steadfast support from afar. Support that comes in the form of thinking about someone and wishing them well with a quiet prayer that they’ll never know I’ve sent.
For now, I’m trying my hand at the delicate art of missing and of being missed.
. . .
It's the beginning of week 4 now. I've just spent a week away from work detoxing and revitalizing my purpose and sense of self in Bali, Indonesia. I didn't take my laptop with me to Bali, so I could really step away from the grind.
I feel a renewed sense of my shining Self and reinvigorated to write and play and explore. I'm back at the marketing consulting, blogging, and writing game again today and I'm so incredibly grateful to share my stories with you. ... Yes, you!