The sun is coming in hot through our little dining room window. We’re back in Pinedale after spending some time in West Yellowstone where Andrew was teaching a workshop. He would leave at 5:30 in the morning and not get home till late late. So it was just me and Islay Blue for four days. The first two days I really enjoyed my alone time. But by day three I was ready for Andrew to be home. I kinda like having him around.
Little fly catching Swifts are circling outside our window chasing bugs. We just had a little five minute shower and already the sun is back out heating things up. I woke up this morning to the sound of Andrew sweet talkin’ Islay. Sometimes I feel like it’s my little family unit against the world. Like we can conquer anything, any stress, any hurdle. We were planning on spending this month traveling around Washington hitting up the National Parks there. The morning we were leaving for West Yellowstone some friends pointed out our tires. They are completely bare on the inside. I did not mentally plan for wear and tear costs on our truck and trailer. So far every month something has come up that we need to fix. Every day that I start to get stressed about money and how we’re going to fix things, some job or new client shows up out of the blue. It’s usually at the last minute, but so far, the Lord has completely provided. I feel like the Lord is training me. Training me to trust Him. Training me to not stress. Training me to have faith in His perfect timing.
So we put our Washington trip on hold. We decided to come back to Pinedale where we get to stay for free. We joined this network of RV campgrounds called Coast to Coast. We pay like $150 bucks a year and we get to pick our “Home” park where livin’ is a whopping $0. And other parks in the network are just $10-15. So with our home set up, we’re going to spend our month backpacking in the Winds. Backpacking is free and we eat cheap for those days, so this is definitely our most cost effective plan.
Can you believe we’ve been on the road for three months!? It feels like we’ve always been here, like we were meant to do this. When we get restless with the view outside our window, we pack up and move. When we get restless with moving, we throw packs on our back, climb a mountain and sleep outside. I still have my brain issues, but I’m finding that it is definitely easier to get through the day. My medication is balanced which means my brain isn’t as loud or distracting. The weight of depression has lifted and I bounce back much quicker from unplanned issues. I think this is a huge sign of mental health. For a while there if something didn’t go as planned, our pipes broke, our RV site wasn’t available, I dropped a strawberry on the ground, big and small things used to set me back for at least an hour. I would get so angry or frustrated. That has subsided considerably. When we found out that we were going to have to spend around $1000 on getting our tires replaced, it didn’t send me in to a hole. I bounced back. I remembered that this did not come as a surprise to God and He will take care of us.
There’s a slight breeze ruffling the tall golden grass. Andrew is across the table from me working on his upcoming Telluride workshop. Islay is at my feet dreaming, her feet are moving, chasing some dreamland chipmunk. Osprey are outside flapping against the wind, then finding the current and floating in midair.
The biggest change since going on the road is my days are so much simpler. I have a routine which includes catching up on the news, having a long quiet time reading the bible, making breakfast, doing yoga, going for long walks with Islay, cleaning up, playing Rummycube with Andrew, then making dinner, eating my dark chocolate then going to bed. There is such a busyness accompanying living in the city. I didn’t realize how unhealthy it was making me until I got away, closer to nature, closer to the quiet and birds and tall grass and green Aspens. Since I’ve tasted how simple life can be, I think it will be very hard for me to ever go back.
Across from me on our dining room wall is a picture of the first camping trip I ever went on with Andrew. We backpacked up the Chisos Mountains in Big Bend and had a bottle of wine in a tree for my birthday. Even then I remember wishing I could do this forever: climb mountains, sleep outside, hike everyday. I can’t believe that all these years later we’re actually doing it. I respect Andrew so much and his drive and discipline and hard work that is making this possible.
The sun is beating through our window heating up my leg and arm. Outside bees are circling the yellow wildflowers. Our neighbor is walking his Chocolate Lab around the RV park. I take a deep breath and sigh it out. When we first hit the road I was stressed about what my purpose is. What am I doing with my life? As the days go by I don’t stress about it as much. It took me about a month to settle into this simple routine. And now I’ve come to accept that although it might take me a wee bit more to get through the day, I do have control over what my day holds. Hazy white clouds are covering up the blue sky. I take a deep breath and sigh it out.