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dreams + passing stripes

April 9, 2010

I love driving. I love getting into a car, turning the key and knowing that, even for that tiny speck of time, whether I’m going to the grocery store or to visit a friend, I am in motion and I am going somewhere. If I’m simply along for the ride, I get mesmerized by the passing stripes on the road, watching the yellow blurs pull me farther and farther along, feeling like I’m hurtling through a tunnel of sky and cement while simultaneously in slow motion.

I’ve been tossing about the idea of a cross-country road trip with a friend of mine lately. This idea of stretching my arms and wheels across the roads from here to California is nearly intoxicating to me. I’ve been looking over maps, dreaming dreams in my head, imagining the lap of the ocean waves and sighing quite a lot. As much as I love being at home, I love travel equally — this idea of learning who you are in different places, meeting people, seeing deserts stretch out into the mist of a rising morning. Oh, how I love it with all my heart. It has been too long since I have seen mountains.

I really hope this trip happens (not to put any pressure on you, Miss J, if you are reading this). It brings to mind, as many things often do, some of my favorite thoughts on this subject by the beloved Don Miller. I haven’t read and revisited Through Painted Deserts lately, mostly because I know if I do, it causes the crazy voices in my head to get louder and louder and right now, well, they are simply loud enough.

So anyway, I’ve posted these words before and I’ll do it again — something in me weeps for the incredible beauty of this over and over. I fall hopelessly in love every damn time.

And so my prayer is that your story will have involved some leaving and some coming home, some summer and some winter, some roses blooming out like children in a play. My hope is your story will be about changing, about getting something beautiful born inside of you, about learning to love a woman or a man, about learning to love a child, about moving yourself around water, around mountains, around friends, about learning to love others more than we love ourselves, about learning oneness as a way of understanding God. We get one story, you and I, and one story alone. God has established the elements, the setting and the climax and the resolution. It would be a crime not to venture out, wouldn’t it?

It might be time for you to go. It might be time to change, to shine out.

I want to repeat one word for you:

Roll the word around on your tongue for a bit. It is a beautiful word, isn’t it? So strong and forceful, the way you have always wanted to be. And you will not be alone. You have never been alone. Don’t worry. Everything will still be here when you get back. It is you who will have changed.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Kim permalink
    April 10, 2010 12:49 pm


    If you need any sort of nudge to take that road trip, here it is: I live in California now! Come see me! And one more thing… Who can really say no to California?

    I can totally relate to your desire to road trip; to see different places – maybe even some familiar spots as well.. I hope whatever you decide with this road trip that it’s the right decision for you and that our paths will cross again sometime in the very near future.

    Love and miss you.


  2. Caroline permalink*
    April 10, 2010 2:02 pm

    @ Kimmy!

    That’s right, you ARE in Cali now! Where in California do you live? We will most likely be in the Orange County/LA area, and I will be zipping up to San Francisco for a couple days too.

    I will keep you informed!

    Love and miss you always!

  3. April 10, 2010 11:51 pm

    This quote, especially the part where he says “Leave,” was instrumental in me, well, leaving Iowa and moving across the country where I knew one person. Never underestimate the power of a few carefully selected words!

    And I am insanely jealous about your possible road trip to Cali. Also I’m jealous people actually live in California.

  4. Caroline permalink*
    April 11, 2010 11:04 am

    @ Victor!

    Ah yes — I figure at some point, I will have to take heed of Don’s words and hit the bricks. We’ll start with this road trip and see where it goes from there. 🙂

    I was actually just thinking this morning about actually living in California — there is a photo as my desktop background from a trip I took to northern Cali a few years back and I was baffled to think some people see that scenery every day. Sheesh. Amazing.

    Thanks for reading, friend!


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