July 21, The Alchemist’s Road

Our family just spent the first full weekend we can remember (as a family of four, w/ our new addition, two year old Michelle), pretty much alone as a family.  What a gift.  What a gift of luxurious time and space for us.  Since Michelle’s birth, we had lived in close quarters with neighbors, sharing thin walls.  Young girls stuck in an apartment in an endless winter can get loud – and should be able to get their ya-ya’s out.  It was sad to have to keep quieting Sofia and Michelle down from exuberant games they’d invented.

But as much as the physical nearness with neighbors who didn’t always appreciate young kids (and of course the wonderful exceptions who we will always treasure:)), there was something about the fullness of activity we were always so – well, so FULL about.  Structured, planned schedule full of preschool, play dates, gym class, meeting someone for one thing or another, in between another meeting or appointment.  Not to mention that Hubby worked more than full time, so it was rare that the four of us were together, just hanging out.  

Time here, right now, is fluid, simple, based on the flow of the day and our energies.  I actually have no idea what time it is most of the day.  In my other world, I always knew what time it was – via my cell phone, the car clock, the kitchen clock – time was ever in sight, ever monitored, ever adhered to.  I know our situation will become more structured in the Fall when Sofia starts school, but right now I’m loving this sense of scheduled time being lifted from us.

In going with the freedom brought from no sense of time – now comes another freedom, as ironic as this will sound.  The road has closed.  Our news comes only via Felipe, so it’s hard to know exact details, but it sounds as if there is a very supportive and peaceful strike going on.  Apparently, the police and even some ministers are present with locals in agreement that the road needs to be fixed.  Felipe says it will probably re-open within a couple of days, and feels hopeful that whoever is in charge of fixing the road will get on it. 

It’s a good thing.  It’s being handled calmly and as we’ve experienced, the road does need work. Once it’s repaired, it will greatly decrease the drive time into Santo Domingo, Bonao – well, basically, anywhere we want to go!  As we consider our own ideas for helping to bring the farm to a self-sustaining community, a good road will benefit whatever business direction the group decides to go in.  For the group, it will be easier to get here.  For retreats and seminars, the distance for folks to travel will be greatly simplified.

And in some wondrous, magical way, for us, this moment seems to be a perfect time for the road to be closed.  We don’t have a schedule we HAVE to follow right now, outside of the farm.  We are well supplied with plenty of food, and every day, Felipe brings some new edible wonder that he has machete’d off of a plant nearby, for us to eat.  Rosa and Felipe live on our side of the road closure so we are all together.  Felipe came in on a donkey and gave the girls a ride this morning (will try to post pic!), and will return in a while with fresh milk from the healthy cow they know.  

So the “To Do Outside of Farm” list – getting our phones hooked up, buying furniture, finding a po box…putting that list aside for now is like shedding another imaginary weight off of me.  Of course we will still have to do all of that, and more.  But it’s as if the road has given us permission to just be here, for now.  Nowhere to go but here.  We have somehow been graced with a spaciousness for our little family that we have never yet known.

Feeling like magical alchemy is at work:)  A closed road, opening us up to new freedom and priceless moments together as a family.  Here’s to all of our roads – be they rocky or paved with gold, open or closed, – may we always find a way to transform our situation into something finer.  May we all have peace, love, happiness, health, safety and goodness.  Everyone.  xoxo

2 thoughts on “July 21, The Alchemist’s Road

  1. Love the imagery of your title on this post; roads, even closed roads, lead us places. Sometimes the place that needs to be explored most is self. In this case, your closed road has led you to family. That kind of unstructured time spent together is priceless. Whether you are listening to the rain, the chickens, the kittens or the wind, the fact that you are sharing this with each other is the reward. Cheryl, you are providing the soil for your girls’ memories, a rich, fertile time that will shape who they are and how they will feel about the world. This time is like a deep pocket they can reach back into and remember you and your husband and the decisions you made that will forever affect the landscape of their lives. What a gift! What a precious thing.

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