Return to Joy

Our last full day on the Cape was spent at the beach – sunning and swimming during the day by the bay and dancing at night by the ocean side. Ya, mon.

My life was a musical last night starring Bob, Linda, Beth and Scott and featuring the sounds of The Dirty Water Dance Band.

The Dirty Water Dance Band

I don’t know if it was the reggae, the moonlight or the nearness to the great Atlantic Ocean. I don’t know if it was a week spent whale watching, biplane riding or eating wonderful food. I don’t know if it was the easygoing friendships we built, the laughter we enjoyed or the end of summer and our 7 month Adventure. Whatever it was (and I imagine it was all of this and more), we plugged into Spirit last night, danced, sang and found JOY on Cape Cod.

Ecstasy is a great word usually reserved for the drug of the same name, sex or a religious experience. Let’s add to that the freedom we can have when we move from our heads into our bodies on the dance floor. Last night, I looked out a sea of still New Englanders watching a HOT reggae band and said to myself, “this crowd needs to dance.” Within a song or two, I took the risk and moved Beth and I to the sandy area next to the band where one other couple was moving to the beat. Within seconds, I found the groove and let go into the music, a mix of Grateful Dead tunes, classic reggae and an infusion of the best jam band guitar playing I’ve heard in a long time. The whole band was great, but Josh Ayala is a man possessed by the Guitar muse.

It took awhile, but the crowd slowly stopped resisting and got to their feet. I knew that this would happen. The combination of the beach environment, beautiful weather and reggae is intoxicating in the best sense. Our inner nature is to play. We can return to this state (even if we’re afraid to go there) when we allow ourselves to let go. And let go I did.

After the peak of or collective high when the band paused for a brief moment, a stranger from somewhere in the audience came and tapped me in the shoulder. I turned and we smiled at one another. She said to me, “we’ve been watching you dance all night. I just wanted to say that we really enjoyed it.” I mumbled some sort of thank you and she receded back into the crowd to be with her tribe. Cool.

When I (you, we) release ourselves and model that it’s okay to be who we are, people will follow. It may start with one other brave soul, but the Organism will grow and multiply under the right conditions. That’s true about us multi-celled creatures. We are born to evolve, connect and return to our simple, beautiful essence. We return to the sea. We become a drop of water that is also the whole ocean.

If you have followed the Adventures of Beth and Scott or are here for the first time, I welcome you as a fellow traveler. It’s been and will continue to be a funhouse of experiences and emotions. Some days – many more than I thought – were full of sadness, confusion and anxiety. In hindsight, these were necessary to move me from where I was in February of this year to where I am today at the end of August.

The ecstatic dance, the letting go, the return to my body – these were all the result of moving through a difficult transition from life before to life now. It was my Odyssey, my Journey into the Center of my Soul. And I’m grateful for it AND ready to rest here on the sand where all great seafaring journeys do. I am ready to take wheels off this trip for awhile, go to a mountain town in the Catskills and begin what comes next.

Bob and Linda Hickman

Thanks to Bob and Linda. Your generosity this past week brought me to my knees in a good way. All along this trip, friends (and some strangers) have showed us kindness in its many forms. Finally, with your help, I have been able to fully receive what is always out there but I haven’t allowed to be “in here” – love. One cannot fully give love unless the channel opens to receive it, too. We were meant to be held and caressed as much as we were meant to do the same for others. This is one of the great treasures I have discovered on this trip, the one I avoided for reasons unknown.

To Cat and Kevin S., Bill, Blake, Sharon, Kevin and Suzie, Paul and Sandi – thank you. This man is finally, finally beginning the return to joy.

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