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Long Trip Alone (Life is a Highway Vol. 6)

It’s a long trip alone over sand and stone
That lie along the road that we all must travel down

So maybe you could walk with me a while
And maybe I could rest beneath your smile
Everybody stumbles sometimes and needs a hand to hold
‘Cause it’s a long trip alone

Maybe I could feel you right beside me ’til I’m home
‘Cause it’s a long trip alone

~~Long Trip Alone, Dierks Bentley

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End of the line

Last stop

Final destination

What a trip, huh? In the past weeks we’ve flown over a few states, got rocked at winding detours and closed roads all before making a pit stop in my hometown and ending up here.

Together.

“We meet no ordinary people in our lives.”
C.S. Lewis

People come into our lives for a reason.

It could be the silent grocery store clerk who smiles every time you stop in or a taxi cab driver that shares his/her life story during a long ride to the airport. Maybe it’s the person you locked eyes with while at an event neither of you were thrilled about, the girl you became best friends with by accident or the person who is now your spouse just because you happened to be walking the same direction to get coffee.

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Hubby (BD) has spent a lot of time looking through the Life is a Highway posts and reading all of the comments. One night he asked, “Don’t you ever get tired of the love fest you got going on?”  I said, “Nope! Connecting with other people is the best part.”

It’s with that community spirit in mind that I’m handing the rest of the series over to a few other talented writers whose paths have crossed mine. They volunteered to share their life’s journey perspective and I’m honored to feature them over the next several weeks. Take a peek at their short bios (shamelessly stolen from their “about” page) and drop some love in the comments or stop by their blogs when the post goes up.

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Chad at Coach P’s Perspective:

I am a Christ follower, Husband to a beautiful Wife, and the father of three awesome kiddos! I am also an AdvoCare Independent Distributor, a school teacher, high school wrestling coach, and writing enthusiast. My hope is that this blog will refresh you and speak to your heart. “A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” Proverbs 11:25

Nicole at Words and Other Things

I made the very loose decision at the age of ten that I wanted to be a writer of some kind. I kept journals, wrote poems about boys (and tumbleweeds) … I use this space to showcase some writing, search for other writers, make some friends, complain a little bit, and discuss some other joys in life.

Beth at Writer B is Me

Since Kindergarten, I’ve been savoring stories like chocolate, dreaming of one day writing a book. But in between writing novels, I need an outlet for all the crazy shiz in mah brain. *Writer B is Me* is that outlet. You’ll find everything here: stories about family; writing; random drivel; author interviews; book promos; poetry….Come skip down the trail with me…it’ll be fun, I promise.

Deanna at My Muted Voice

While growing up, I learned to become a chameleon and blend in wherever and with whomever I was with which lead to so much heartache. I thought I was protecting myself. In reality, I was hiding myself. Then, I found real love, honest and supportive love. I thought I knew myself, but being with my husband has taught me so much about life, love and ME. I have stories to tell. I have perspectives to share and these things can’t be censored even though they aren’t always fun.

Nadia at What Would Nadia Do?

When Nadia is not busy saving the planet, she rescues kittens, basks in sunshine and forwards motivationals to her entire contact list. In between posting cat memes on Facebook, she also enjoys calculating her BMI, learning how to fold fitted sheets on Martha Stewart dot com and having aha moments while clipping her toenails. Welcome to the world of a 27-year-old writer, wife, camembert freak, domestic antichrist and expat in Australia, and the best day of your life.

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The last two writers are my blogger besties and have kept me writing when I wanted to stop. They keep me honest and challenge me to be brave. We tweet and e-mail into the wee hours when the insomnia fairies come out to play and they fuel me with copious amounts of  sugar and gratuitous pictures of Daryl on a bad day.

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Claimed…HA!

They will be collaborating to close out the series toward the end of July. In addition to writing for their own blogs, they curate the masterpieces of words, music and art found in the pages of Words for the Weekend and Words for the Year. They also have mysterious super powers which you can read about on my Playing Favorites page.

Jennie at Daisies from Dust

I’ve got MacGyver like skills in making things out of whatever is on hand. And if you have to Google MacGyver you just made me feel extra old, thanks. In her spare time, Jennie channels Bukowski and teaches her goat, Goatacus, how to ride horses. (Okay, maybe Goatacus teaches her.)

Editor’s note: Jennie completely copped out on her “about” page–go over there and give her some crap! There’s more to this girl than she reveals and I’m completely drawn to her inclusive, generous and kind soul.

Christy from Running on Sober

My name is Christy. Or you can call me RoS. I’ll answer to just about anything, especially if you bribe me with cookies. I am a runner. I am a music, book, quote and movie geek. I have a small zoo; I love all animals. I am a recovering alcoholic. I tend to write about life, death and grief, getting and staying sober, silver linings, running, and mindfulness. While I often keep a sober-centric focus on this blog, I am stretching my writing boundaries and including more of my poetry and creative writing.

Editor’s note: Christy rocks. She has taken care of me and held my hand in more instances than I care to admit. Her brave spirit and beautiful smile are infectious and I feel blessed to have found a friend for life.

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When I think about places I’ve been, trails I’ve run and roads I’ve traveled, I always come back to the people who have been there with me–either in person or spirit. It’s rare that I don’t have a face on my mind or memories of a conversation when looking out an airplane window or through the dashboard glass during a long drive.

The beauty of a landscape, a footfall on the terrain or the sunrise over a mountain mean so much more when you have someone special to share it with. Thank you for coming along…it would have been a long trip alone without you :-)

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Coach Parks continues the Highway series with a post next Monday.

As for me, I’m looking to lighten up a bit and write some less serious stuff. There’s been too much silliness, clumsy mistakes, and poison ivy rash in awkward places to act all poetic and tortured. My Imperfect Summer is in full swing and you’re welcome to join in the chaos every Wednesday (or Thursday). xo

37 thoughts on “Long Trip Alone (Life is a Highway Vol. 6)”

  1. Very nice, my friend. Very touching and light and freeing. A balm to soothe this morning chaos.

    It reminded me of that popular poem:

    People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. When you figure out which it is, you know exactly what to do.

    When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed outwardly or inwardly. They have come to assist you through a difficulty, to provide you with guidance and support, to aid you physically, emotionally, or spiritually. They may seem like a godsend, and they are. They are there for the reason you need them to be. Then, without any wrong doing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up or out and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered and it is now time to move on.

    When people come into your life for a SEASON, it is because your turn has come to share, grow, or learn. They may bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it! It is real! But, only for a season.

    LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons; those things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person/people (anyway); and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

    Sounds like you have some lifers on your side there :)

    Blessings,
    Paul

    1. Dear Paul,
      I read your wonderful words first thing this morning and waited until I had a chance to properly respond.
      I’m so grateful that you took the time to capture the pieces I left out of my own post. I don’t let a lot of people in my life, but I stick like glue to the ones I do.
      I even had parts of the poem you mentioned as part of my post and I took it out because I didn’t feel like drumming up some uncomfortable, missing people feelings (yep! I’m a chicken!!)
      I’m blessed to have wonderful/healthy lifetime relationships and I’m also grateful for the seasonal ones, too. As always, you bring such valuable perspective and context to these posts.
      Michelle

      PS: I read your latest this morning…you can bet I’ll be back to comment on that one, too!

      1. Thanks and don’t worry about the comments – you’re a busy gal :)

        I owe you some some music notes soon, don’t I? I will get them to ya as soon as I have a few moments to spare.

        Paul

  2. How exciting! I’m looking forward to the evolving of this series.

    “Hubby (BD) has spent a lot of time looking through the Life is a Highway posts and reading all of the comments. One night he asked, “Don’t you ever get tired of the love fest you got going on?” I said, “Nope! Connecting with other people is the best part.”

    Hear, hear. Without connection, we would die – our species would become extinct. Without connection to his/her primary caregiver(s), an infant’s brain would not develop properly and they would be at a high risk of mental illness.

    No — I would never tire of the love fest. A monetary value cannot be given, and for a good reason. When someone takes the time to selflessly offer encouragement, comfort and inspiration — that is priceless.

    1. Well said, my dear friend! Connection has been the very best part of what started out (for me) to be a somewhat selfish endeavor.
      I would have never found you without it :-)

  3. excited for this Michelle…what a great idea!
    and I will definitely be looking forward to Wednesday (or Thursday) for some silliness!
    xo

    1. AND…if you have some silly ideas send them my way!!
      AS SOON as I committed to a day…my writer’s brain swelled up and went into block mode.
      Speaking of…I need to check out your space and see if you’ve been playing with those new prompts you found.
      I hope you are doing well, Michele. I’ve been terrible about keeping up and head back to work on Friday. Perhaps life will get normal around here again.

      1. Don’t bother checking out my blog…I have seriously frozen up. Not sure what is going on. I’ve written but i’m, not pushing publish…..hopefully the slump will end soon!

      2. Hey…at least you’re writing! Just cuz you don’t hit the “publish” button doesn’t mean it’s not valuable or doing the job. Christy had to remind me…just write…even if it’s just for yourself. I am the worst at remembering that. I have confidence that your muse will back soon….she is probably tied up a yoga right now :-)

      3. Okay, I am still on the feed for this post – and forgot to unsubscribe after I delightfully got a reply to my comment – ha! but I am glad I was still on it because well said MT – well said – to keep writing even if just for yourself – and actually there is time when that writing has to be done just because of the healing, therapeutic power it has with collecting the thoughts and helping us to sort through any random stuff “in a coherent function” – and I just loved the way you noted this MT – because the inner focus and value of writing seems to be lost by some bloggers who seem to have publishing goals that are driven by numbers – and well, you and many of your readers here just seem to be blogging about better reasons than numbers and followers – and to read “mishedup’s” “not sure what writing is going on” – well I just love all the feel of this processing and churning over here – good stuff….

  4. hey mamma-joy – the opening lines were fantastic to start with….
    “Everybody stumbles sometimes and needs a hand to hold…” and how cool that your hubby noted the love fest – one time my spouse looked at a page I had opened – and it had just a few photos in the post – and he said something like “now how could a mere few photos bring in so many comments…” – and then I reminded him about the power of photos – and also the exchange that many of us share – and well, I like the word love fest cause sometimes it feels like that.

    I will try and check out some of those blogs – at least one – and have a nice day… and hi to the husbs from moi.

    and P.S. hope you are healing and not doing too much….

    1. You are SO right! I know it was your photos that first drew me to your site and gave me bravery to add a few more to mine!
      (I’m still thinking about the merry-go-round photos you directed me to earlier)..
      The bloggers listed are so diverse in their voices–I think there will be something for everyone in the next few weeks.
      I am healing fine, my dear! I head back to work on Friday. Other than needing impromptu naps in the middle of the day, I’m hanging in!! Thank you for caring :-)

  5. So excited about this, Michelle! You’ve got an outstanding line-up. Jennie and I are really going to have to bring it, lol, no pressure or anything with all those talented writers. :)

    Thanks for the Daryl fix! I’ve been going through withdrawals!

    1. You naturally bring it, girl! I am stoked for your Big Finish!
      Speaking of withdrawals…I need my Christy fix! Poetry? Wisdom? Free writes? I miss seeing you out here. No pressure or anything ;-)

      1. And…your archives are fantastic. Actually, it’s a really great way to let us newer folks see the path you’ve forged all while giving you some time to unplug and soak up the sun. Ain’t nuthin’ to write about if you aren’t living real life to feed your stories, right?! xo

  6. And thank you for sharing Michelle, I have enjoyed the journey my friend :) (Have a rest and go play in the garden, get some dirt under your fingernails and chew on a fresh pulled carrot. Very grounding after your wander in the wilderness :) )

  7. Michelle, it looks like I’ve discovered your little corner in the nick of time. Looking forward to your fab guests posting. Cheers REDdog

    1. So glad to see you back!!! In fact, I was worried that my “follow” button wasn’t working or that I’d miss seeing your stuff. I was just over on your page and was relieved to see 1) Yep! I’m still a follower and 2) I got to read my favorite story of yours (The Glass) again.
      You are so kind to ask about my garden and sunflowers. They are all prospering, tall and…egads! Prolific!! (I’m not used to getting so much rain!).
      I hope you are doing well and am so happy to see you around these parts again.

      1. And I was just today thinking about taking “The Glass” off the sticky post so people would see my recent updates first. I think you just answered that question for me. Thanks, :) I could always tell you were on “Team Everybody”.

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