Early in 1995, my husband Mick & I moved to Maui from Spokane. I basically “retired” from my work in the mainframe computer world and landed on that gorgeous island with no real expectations as to what would happen next. HE was the one with the job that took us there.
I know what you’re thinking: “How luscious! How wonderful to live in a tropical paradise and be able to enjoy it without having to slog off to some horrible job every day!”
And yes, Maui IS amazing. The rainy green jungle. The windsurfers at Ho’okipa (that’s where the picture at the top of this page was taken). The breathing lava flows at Waianapanapa. The high waterfall at Hana. The bamboo forests. Sunrise from the top of Haleakala. Sunset in Kihei. The gentle energy of the land. But I have to tell you that moving there was the most terrifying experience I have ever had.
At that point in my life I defined myself by the things I did. High tech job in the corporate world, city person, well-trained consumer, excellent income. When we moved to Maui, all of that was stripped away. All of it. In the stroke of a plane ride I became just me, whoever the hell that was. During the next four years, I got to figure that out.
In truth, that time was an amazing gift. I am deeply grateful for that interlude. I came out with some deep shifts in my attitudes toward the world and my life that have served me well.
You’re probably wondering why I’m telling you about this ancient history. Here’s the thing: I have realized that I am facing a similar shift RIGHT NOW. Dammit. From the scary before-it-happens side, not the relieved wow-how-wonderful-and-profound side. It helps me to remember I have done this before.
Coming Next: Dismantling my life, one chunk at a time