New luggage for the New chapter

Many great ideas come my way when I am submerged in a hot bath. This particular evening the topic of my thoughts was about packing my car for this next chapter in my life. Most of my clothes and a few personal items will be coming with me. All of which has to fit in my car along with the dog, Journey, her items, and all things hiking. I gifted my car with a rooftop cargo carrier to store the majority of my items in order to give Journey room in the car to spread out for our VERY long car rides. While thinking of the luggage I currently have, my heart yelled, “You CAN NOT bring that luggage with you on this next chapter! New ones are required!”

The old luggage has seen many years of travel. They were in pretty good shape, but they had a story of the past that is NOT welcome in this new life chapter. I realize that wherever you go there you are and emotional baggage can come with you if you chose to bring it. Realizing that the old luggage still carried some lingering emotional baggage, I knew it was time to set them free.

One of my very favorite items to collect is tax receipts from donating to the Goodwill. I was delighted to drop off my old luggage at the closest donation spot. Those items will bring joy to another person’s life without any residual emotional garbage!

Immediately after the Goodwill stop, I marched into Marshalls and damn near skipped over to the travel section. Much to my delight, I found three of the perfect luggage pieces for my new life chapter. One of them even has passport style stamps from all over the globe on the outside of it. My heart and soul smiled brightly as I proudly loaded my new luggage which is free of emotional baggage into my car.

I have been slowly packing, painting, and donating items in preparation for this leap of faith for the past month. With doing so, I have removed everything from the walls. It looks much like a fresh canvas. Initially, I was worried that a home with empty walls would cause sadness. Much to my surprise, the opposite happened. There was a constant story going on quietly in the back of my mind every time I looked at pictures or my artwork that made my mood unnecessarily heavy. It was not until everything was gone that the story stopped playing. Without the old painful stories, my whole mood lifted. I am sleeping better, I am future-focused, my chest feels open and my breath is full. This is GOOD! I may or may not ever hang those items on the walls when I find my next Youtopia.

I read somewhere to never be defined by your past; it was just a lesson, not a life sentence. I have more than served my time for my painful past; I chose to set myself free. Today I do that with new luggage!

Just a few pages left in this chapter

This chapter of my life is coming to an end, actually, there are only 25 pages (days) left.  I am moving away from the town that has been home for the past 24 years in order to find my next Youtopia.  Actually, I have lived here longer than anywhere else.  This is the place I have spent all but 4 years of my adult life!  Wow, that is a long damn time.  Where am I going?  The first 21 days are planned, but after that, who knows.  A Christmas gift to my self opened doors to move to the Wild West and explore with an open mind and heart.

24 years ago, I came to Danville, VA.  A new Occupational Therapist with bright eyes and big dreams of a family and career.  All of those dreams came true, just not in the way I planned.  My road to having a family and career took many unexpected turns, much like life does for all of us.  This town gave me friendship, love, marriage, a baby, divorce, a blended family, career expansion, divorce, loss of friendships, yoga, an incredible career, trail running, and the love of tree-hugging along with so much more.  The greatest thing I learned in this chapter is that I HAVE to love myself fully as I am right now and set myself up for emotional success.  Life has a way of working itself out once I get out of my own way.

The Christmas gift to my self was licensure to practice OT in all of the states that made my heart sing while on my Tree Hugging Tour in 2015.  After that epic road trip, I returned to treating patients rather than managing people.  Much to my surprise, treating people reminded me how much I love this work.  So now, I can nurture myself while exploring the Wild West doing something that brings me purpose and joy; traveling Occupational Therapy.

I am excited and terrified at the same time.  It feels like I may puke joy!   I hit the road with Journey, my beloved four-legged companion, on Good Friday as I March into the next chapter of my life.  I invite you to follow me on this Womanly Journey!  Literally and figuratively, it would be great to have you with me.  I will share pictures and blog posts as this new chapter unfolds for both of us.  I am on the ledge and it is time to jump with the faith that one of three things will happen:

  1. The net will appear
  2. I will learn how to fly or
  3. My baggage will turn into a parachute

No matter what happens, it will be an adventure! Those of you who know me well understand that not planning is out of my comfort zone, to say the least.  I understand that the magic of life is right outside of my comfort zone, and that is where I want to be; in the magic of this life!  This is not a reckless trek across the country; it is just an open-ended life opportunity without a defined plan.

I thank you, Danville!  You have been an amazing teacher.  I am grateful for all of the tears and love that you have given me and will carry you with me forever.  You are irreplaceable, comfortable, known and the keeper of 24 years of my life.  I bow out gracefully while admiring your growth over the past 2 decades.  I will visit so we can share stories of the good old days and compare adventures!


Kristin Springfield