This idea drove me most of my life. It kept me going and kept me stuck simultaneously. During the journey that I thought I was on, the one to find where I could belong, I was often on cruise control. At other times, I broke down by the side of the road, but the trip was always about getting “there,” to the point of my life. The part in my story that said, “She can now live happily ever after,” because it was where I finally was supposed to be. The one where it was obvious I fit in, where I knew I belonged. Where I would never again question or doubt.
My journey seemed to be about trying to get to this place so that I would never have to feel doubtful or less than. In trying to figure out the road map to it, the one that has been my life, I kept putting one foot in front of the other. Sometimes I moved forward, but at others, it was two steps back for each one ahead. There were always detours, so it was never as simple as just looking out past the dashboard in front of me and stepping on the gas.
I now realize, gratefully I admit, that if I had actually found the place of belonging, I would have missed most of my life. I would have never experienced all that has unfolded in the midst of the search. I would not have met the people along the way that have helped bring “me” to “me.” None of my fellow seekers, travelers, trippers and "fall-ers" would be my peeps today. I would have never gotten to love them.
No, what I sought was not a place, after all. What I needed to find was the simple realization that the journey has actually been one to ME. This trek I thought I was on was really a voyage of learning to stand still and honor my light. It was about coming to belong to me, not to some place, person, or thing. It was about seeing all of my talents and weaknesses and owning my perfect flaws along with the accomplishments I’ve known along the way. It was about knowing that I fit in to this beautiful, complicated world simply because I say I do.
Today, my sense of belonging involves setting up camp in my heart. It’s not that the journey is over, because I don’t expect it will ever be as I continue to grow. But I don’t have to try so hard to figure out where to go or who to go with anymore, because I know I can pitch my tent anywhere I decide to and “fit in.” And if and when I pack up and move on to the next campsite, it won’t be because I don’t think I belong anymore, but because I am ready for more adventure.