That good clean air hits my lungs as the wind scurries through the trees waking up the wind chimes. The echoes of a car or two across the marsh reach me for a split second, just enough to distract me from the music of the chimes.
Well, mama’s home technically. The place where I can take refuge. Where my family gives big hugs and bigger meals. I don’t have to hustle. Or pretend. I get to just BE.
She calls it Paradise Point.
Going home can be and mean a lot of different things to different people. Sometimes it’s a source of frustration. Or anxiety. Or maybe a nostalgic reminder of where you came from.
For me, it’s a little of the ladder, but these days it’s forced me into “break” mode. A chance to re-evaluate and be with the ones I love most.
Like the best medicine or vaccines, too much can be bad for you, but just enough will heal you right on up. After 10 days of being home, it was time to leave. We drank. We sang. We played games. We danced. We ate.
I felt like I’d gotten to know everyone better, and I had some (what will be) long cherished conversations with my mom.
Nothing came close to our final conversation sitting at The Foxy Loxy coffee shop in Savannah, GA. It was one of those moments that you really can’t plan. An organic bleed of emotion on the wood table with coffee on our breath and love on our brains. We all needed it. We just didn’t know it.
Inspired by a YouTube video of an entrepreneur talking about what she is proud of herself for, I proclaimed that we would do an “exercise”. My sister, brother-in-law, mother and I would go around in a circle one by one and tell our top 5 things we are proud of ourselves for accomplishing in 2021.
For me, I was proud of getting my real estate license. For launching a course. For moving to Los Angeles. For loving my girlfriend better than I’ve ever loved before. And for NOT giving up on my dreams.
Then, we each focused on one person and told them what WE were proud of THEM for.
So we got 3 warm-hearted grenades from people we love. This was extra special because these people know me, and I know them.
And lastly, a challenge for each of us to take into the new year.
As the tears shed and the energy of the room focused on us, I began to feel such an immense amount of love and awe for my family. We were communicating freely, supportingly, and lovingly around a table, not caring at all what others may think.
It was one of those moments that you know you won’t forget. What I hope will be the first of many exercises we do around the holidays. At that coffee table sat dreamers, lovers, fighters who had been on emotional rollercoasters in 2021 all in their own way. It was like all of the emotions that had been swirling throughout the holidays and entire year joined forces and bonded us all together. A bond that can’t be broken.
I left not only feeling thankful but also feeling this cathartic peace that I’ve so needed. I felt heard and understood. I felt like this is what life was about. These moments. This moment.
And when I looked into each of their eyes, I felt them feel the same way.
As I gave my final hugs, I looked into my mama’s eyes. It’s as if she said…
Cole, go fly.
I’m flying mama.