For most of my life, when I travel, anything goes.
It’s a time of total abandon from routine, letting go of myself and all the work I’ve done to maintain my good habits at home. I make excuses, like, “I can’t do yoga/run/meditate, because I don’t have my mat/sneakers/pillow with me.” Or, “When ELSE am I going to have a banana blueberry wedding cake?” Or, “I don’t want to be rude to my host, so I should really take a second helping of pasta.”
And then when I come home, I can’t fit into my jeans. I feel heavy and uncomfortable. And I have to start all over again.
But something was different this time. I just spent the past 8 weeks traveling, swimming in New England, skiing in the Andes, farming in the Appalachian mountains, and more. I slept on couches, in tents, in my childhood bed, and five-star hotels. I lived out of one pretty small backpack, and watched all the old excuses come flooding back in each new city.
Sometimes I gave in. I ate the cake. I skipped my yoga practice. I finished my plate to make someone else happy. But when I came back to my Brooklyn apartment last night, I didn’t feel heavy and uncomfortable. In fact, I felt beautiful, radiant… even better than when I’d left.
Because the truth is, I never really left.
This past year, I’ve had a tremendous shift in coming home to my body. For the most part, I’ve stopped using food as a way out, a distraction, and a method of softening my emotions. I discovered what I was truly hungry for and found incredible ways to experience total satisfaction on a daily basis. And most importantly, I’ve discovered what it really means to love and accept myself exactly as I am.
So when I left my apartment 8 weeks ago, I was curious to see how things would go as I encountered my old triggers on the road.
I made self-care a priority. I practiced presence. I felt my feelings. I asked for what I needed. I took time outs. And when I looked in the mirror when I got back, I saw a woman who never really left. A woman who is truly at home with who she is.
I suddenly realized I no longer have a life I want to abandon. And that my body—with all its flaws and beauty—is the truest home I’ll ever have.
Coming home to my body this past year has done so much more for me than being able to fit into clothes. My life has gone from black and white to color. I can now feel things I haven’t felt in years—both good and bad. Love has blossomed, my true purpose is clear, and I know exactly where I belong. Right here, in my body. A home I will never leave.