September 17, 2012

my two cents: reconnect.

When I lived in Oxford, I felt light. Despite the rain and the everyday gray and the tiring nuances of a complicated relationship, I always felt light. The days seemed longer and fuller and charged with possibility — and lately, I've been craving that same sense of chance. Of potential.

Recently, as I looked back and tried to pinpoint what exactly made that time so special — so marked by its openness — I came up with one word: connection. I was connected to the city in a way I'd never experienced before. Connected to myself, too — to my own voice, my inner voice, one that I wasn't always ready or willing to hear. In Oxford, though, I listened.

It was partly, of course, a bit of disconnection: limited cell minutes, no Twitter, no Instagram, no blog for that matter. Without having to stay connected all the time, I was more connected than ever.

I walked, too. Everywhere, anywhere. I spent mornings and afternoons strolling beside all the other townspeople. I noticed things as I moved, etched all the images and faces and ideas in my mind. I felt so deeply present that I found myself narrating everything as it happened. I wrote pages and pages each day, notes on who I saw and what they did, how it looked outside, how I felt. There were a lot of pages about trying to hold onto it all: the memories, of course, but mostly how I lived.

There's something to be said for living simply, quietly — for being present and mindful.
This week, I'm planning to reconnect. Anyone care to join?

(Photo: Streetside Blooms | My Flickr)


Brooke said... [Reply to comment]

I'm so with you! What a perfect post :)

Allie said... [Reply to comment]

I'll definitely work on reconnecting. This is why I am so excited to study abroad next semester. I can't wait to grow more within myself not having the comforts of connection.

Niken said... [Reply to comment]

i love to pay attention to people and anything around when i take a walk or on a ride. i love to write down what i see and i think of the people in certain thing or certain colors. narrating their characters in my mind. i do that too with blogs :)

love this post, Laura.

Laura Marie said... [Reply to comment]

@Allie Where are you studying abroad?! You're going to have SUCH a blast :)

Bethany said... [Reply to comment]

I felt exactly that way when I lived in Salzburg for a semester. I miss it still, every day. I struggle to recreate that kind of intentionality with which I lived there - walking, observing, writing, disconnecting in order to connect. Thanks for the reminder. ;)

Chelsea said... [Reply to comment]

I really need to do that. This is a great reminder.

Emily said... [Reply to comment]

This was so beautifully written and so refreshing to hear! I absolutely love this sentence: "There's something to be said for living simply, quietly — for being present and mindful." It will be echoing in my head for a while, so thank you.