Sunday, June 14, 2009


I have been anticipating this feeling of freedom, which is (finally) lifting my spirits and moving me forward. Moving to Ecuador is so much more for me than taking a year off work or exploring a new culture and language. I am leaving my life behind and starting an entirely new one, one in which I have all sorts of choices to be whomever or pursue whatever direction I want. I feel unburdened by so many details of the life I spent my adulthood building, a life I was mostly quite satisfied with. I see the next several months as being entirely open to all sorts of possibilities and am eager for the challenges waiting for me.

So it no longer feels burdensome to pack boxes. I feel a surge of relief with every box I tape shut. And I am entertained. I found a DVD of Tara when she was about three and visiting Disneyland with my friend Susan and another of Maya at the Montreal Jazz Festival in 2000 with Susan and Noel. I wish I had videotaped more events in their lives; I have photographed regularly, but have never made movies, so I am especially thankful that Susan was always busy with her video camera and I have these precious recordings of my children when they were young and adorable. Susan also videotaped our wedding surreptitiously, which is entertaining to watch, because I am so unsettled I cannot stop moving and I am constantly scanning my surroundings as if I was ready to escape at any moment. And Eric is calm and peaceful and making an effort to reassure me, and Maya is the flower girl and throwing flower petals on the floor and then picking them up and putting them back in the basket and then trying to take off my hat and wear it during the ceremony. I became focused on looking for the videotape and could not find it; I think my parents had a copy and now I want to make it into a DVD so I can have another copy. It is so easy to get distracted, especially with photographs and letters and cards. I am constantly reminding myself to get back to work and get more boxes packed and sealed.

The next two weeks of organizing and packing and leaving no longer feels overwhelming. I wonder if the agony of these past weeks has been about letting go of what is known and fear of my unknown future. I see myself moving forward, but I have no idea what is next, and that does not worry me much. I feel no pressure to accomplish anything or do anything in particular and if I do nothing but absorb as much about Ecuador as I can, that is fine. I do not feel distressed about what I am leaving behind. Perhaps because I have a home to return to, I do not feel displaced or disconnected. I am back on track as far as seeing this move to Ecuador as a great adventure for me, for my children, for Eric, for us as a family. This is how this journey started, many many months ago, when Eric and I started getting excited about it. It feels as if I fell into a abyss for a while and have scrambled out and find myself back on terra firma, still unknown, but an inviting place. I like this sense of freedom.


  1. Hi there,

    I've read alot of your blogs over the last few months--they read just like a Mary Morris novel, who I happen to like. I think it's great that you have kept this journal of your emotions and feelings on the move, someday it should be a book. I think you are very scared to leave your familiar nest, as most Cancerians are, but believe me, the move will shake up the sediment and be good for all that 'ails you'! I am looking forward to reading your blogs once you are living here! I was born in North America and my husband and I (from the D.C. area, although he has lived in Quebec years ago) have lived here for about 30 years now. The country is truly demented sometimes in a comical way, hence an occasional "ecuatrocity"...but living here for a year will truly make you appreciate all that you have taken for granted in your very privileged life! As far as practicing here, there are many "gringo" communities who could and would use your services if you do wish to practice. Ecuador is a wonderful country and my husband and I mainly align ourselves with the indigenous communities--Ecuador has some 14 distinct 'tribes' of Indians--the Otavalos being the most accomplished in many ways. Quito is a big and bustling city with so much to offer culturally, but in an hour or two you can be outside in the countryside straddling the Andes and visiting the 'true Ecuador.' Good luck with your move, don't dwell on it, just dive in. Remember, "no pain, no gain!" When you get out to Otavalo, stop in and visit us at our natural foods restaurant, Ali Shungu. I'm sure you will be coming out this way a few times as Otavalo has the largest handicraft market in South America on Saturdays. The end of June starts one of the biggest Indigenous fiestas in all of South America, Inti Raymi or 'San Juan' as it's called here. It goes on for well over a week and there is lots of music and costume and celebrations! I know it will be one of the best years of your life!

  2. I am actually getting more and more excited and eager to finally get to Ecuador (after this endless preparation!). We will definitely come to visit you in Otavalo. I am looking forward to it!