I’m typing this from the back corner of an airplane, flying 37,987 feet over Atlanta. I’m hurtling through the air in a metal tube, making the 989-mile journey from Orlando to Indianapolis in about 2 hours. For the dollar price of a decent pair of jeans. I paid more for the tablet I’m tapping these words on than I did to look down at the earth like an astronaut coming back into orbit. Crazy.
And yet, this journey that seems crazy when you break it down is actually returning me to normal. I’m coming back to real life.
I’ve spent the last two months touring with a Christmas rock band, playing shows in prisons and homeless shelters. If you don’t know me that probably sounds like the beginning of a bad joke or a Lifetime movie plot, but it’s true.
This touring season has been hectic and harried, full of late-night gas station stops and frigid early-morning wake-up calls. Our schedule has been all over the place, and that combined with rehearsals, regular work meetings, and overseas travel means that I haven’t had a steady routine since August. I haven’t worked out more than twice in one week since June. Add in the emotional intensity of talking to sobbing inmates and still grieving the loss of one of my best friends, plus not getting a lot of alone time, and all this makes for a very unstable Ashleyne.
So today I am returning home. I’m returning to my routine and my bed and my gym and my cubicle.
Normal often feels boring. Home can seem like an abstract concept. But today, normal and home sound wonderful.
(Feel free to remind me of that in a month, when I’m complaining about it.)
So, wherever you are today, whatever you’re doing, why don’t you take a moment to join me in appreciating normal and real life? If you’re far away, or in a strange season, stop to look forward to returning to normal. If you’re in the day-in-day-out right now, no matter how hectic, stop – breathe – notice how nice real life is. Look around and enjoy the mess, organization, chaos, noise, or quiet. Are you home? Is this where you belong? Savor it.