Not the way one would want to start a 12 day International adventure, but nonetheless, it happened. I left my cell phone on my flight to Munich on my way to Florence, Italy. A magical trip that my dear Aunt had gifted me to experience a part of her heritage. My first trip outside of the United States in nearly 12 years, I was enthusiastic to observe a new culture and encounter unique sights, foods and aromas for the first time.
As soon as I realized it was missing, I knew it was gone forever. Not only my vehicle to contact my family, but also my connection to Social Media, pictures, the ability to search for answers to everyday common questions at the touch of my fingertips. Although I had the ability to communicate back home, as needed, the freedom and frequency to do so whenever I wanted was limited.
There is something cleansing for me in starting over. It hasn’t been the easiest year. The loss of my daughters father, watching my beautiful girls deal with the loss of him, taking the time to be 100% available for them, although necessary and important, it has put my career on hold. Somehow the loss of my beloved phone — my link to everything and everyone — was a welcome one to allow me to start over with what I chose to bring along with me.
Being unplugged has allowed me to be present. To soak in my surroundings. To share with who matters most when it matters most. It forced me write down my thoughts, to slow down and to simply BE. I made new friends, built new memories with my Aunt, and had one of the most memorable events of my life. Not to mention the benefit of blissful ignorance.
Biggest revelation…I didn’t miss ONE thing. The initial guilt I felt for not keeping consistent with my newly created blog, sharing updates with family and friends, or keeping up with emails quickly escaped me as I got lost in the Tuscan fields of grapes and olives, the intricate architecture of the churches of Florence, admiring the adorable dogs that lined the streets of Cortona and sampling sweets in the streets of Sienna.
The Beautifully Inspired lesson here is this:
Make time for you. No one really cares if you go off the grid for a bit. Your perceived responsibilities will be there when you get back to your current reality. What you can gain in the meantime is more personal growth than anything else available. Get lost. Find yourself. Come back better and stronger than before. The world is waiting for you.