In a recent conversation with a friend who was planning an intense climbing trip across the world, I asked, “what do you hope that the trip gives you?”
His list of answers was interesting and thoughtful, but one stood out in particular:
The beautiful feeling of coming home. A feeling that you can’t possibly experience unless you leave.
We hung out there, with that topic, for a while, as we both thought about the different times in our lives that we had left – mentally or emotionally or physically, and then came back to something.
We covered leaving/returning in different life categories like:
We talked about Joseph Campbell’s depiction of the hero’s journey, where leaving is a critical part of the story, a critical part of success, a critical part of becoming the hero of your life and being of service to others.
Sometimes we need to leave, in order to taste the sweetness of coming back.
We all know and understand this experience.
Coming back from school to the warmth/safety of home.
Coming back from a long time away from loved ones to the familiar smiles and hugs and wonderful feelings.
Coming back from a transformative learning/growth experience to share an enriched version of yourself.
Coming back from a physical challenge to health and comfort.
Coming back from a business challenge to share lessons learned.
Coming back from a break of self-care practices and re-engaging with self/others/life/health/vitality with new appreciation.
Coming back from a dark time to feeling alive again, and experiencing more joy and fulfillment than ever before.
Coming back is a beautiful feeling.