In his book “You Can’t Go Home Again” Thomas Wolfe writes:
“This is man, who, if he can remember ten golden moments of joy and happiness
out of all his years, ten moments unmarked by care, unseamed by aches or itches,
has power to lift himself with his expiring breath and say: "I have lived upon this
earth and known glory!”
You can’t go home again… if you do be ready for the possibility of long time memories colliding with present day realty. If you do go home again, try to remember “that if map doesn’t match the ground, the map is wrong”. These are the words of Gordon Livingston’s book “Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart.” (Father’s Day Lesson 2017)
Not daunted by the idea that I can’t, I have gone home again. I have seen the landscape of my youth through the eyes of an adult. The ground didn’t match the map that was fixed in my mind, yet in this instance, I know the map wasn’t entirely wrong. The map served me well as a young one, roaming, imagining, and playfully exploring the inner and outer world of myself through the years. All is as it is meant to be, perfect in its own sometimes peculiar way. The stream is shallow and narrow, not nearly as deep or wide as I had recalled. The woods are grown thick and lush, and boast every shade of green. They invited me to walk along their paths each day, to center myself and to ground myself. The woods enticed me to enjoy the fragrant flowers. The woods drew me in to marvel at the life supported within its boundaries ~ the family of deer, the bunnies, the spiders, and snakes. Yet, the very ground I walked upon betrayed the map of my mind. The red dog road that crunched loudly under each step I took as a youngster was now covered beneath the blacktop surface. I walked for nearly two miles before finding even the smallest remnant of the old familiar red dirt and rocks of my childhood memory.
Then there was the creek the dividing line between playmates. The creek that served as the line drawn for tug of war. The boundary set for how far I may travel from my own yard to play. Oh how the map betrayed my memory. The creek was not nearly as wide or deep as I had remembered. “When the ground doesn’t match the map, the map is wrong”. There I sat creek side with clear evidence that perhaps I remembered some things differently that they truly were.
What if there are other things in my life that I recall differently and might see from a different perspective today? Perhaps the teacher who insisted that I stay in my seat, was not simply misunderstanding me, rather teaching me the skill of self-discipline. Today, based on the Unity teachings, I would call that the power of dominion.
Regardless of my childhood or adult view of the world I can say that I have many moments of joy and happiness. I can say with complete honesty that I do have many more than ten moments that are carefree. I do have many more than ten moments that were unmarked by aches and itches. I can shout from the hilltops of my Pennsylvania childhood home that I live upon the earth and I know glory.
It was a long drive home. Twenty hours behind the wheel with Micah by my side. Micah, my golden retriever is an outstanding travel companion. During my visit with my Mom who wouldn’t mind me telling you she is entering her 85th year upon the earth, I gathered many, many more moments of glory. I even began creating a new map to carry in my mind.
Sunday we shall continue The Powers of Your Independence and I am very much looking forward to seeing you at 11:00. In the meantime, go out and create beautiful memories.
Blessings of great love,