Lee and a curious calico crisscross the country in a RV, living simply and sustainably.

Six weeks ago I moved into Gypsy full-time. The first few weeks were a flurry of learning to drive a pickup and tow a trailer, buying start-up equipment and finding a place for all the things I’d packed from my previous home. It was physically and mentally exhausting, but emotionally freeing at the same time. Having the time to do all the things I wanted and needed to do was a blessing.

The biggest changes so far have been in my health, relationships, and priorities. Last year, I gained 30 pounds in stress weight, sometimes eating three fast food meals a day, and nibbled on candy and junk food to get through a workday that was either non-stop or moved at a snail’s pace. Working three part-time jobs and commuting 90 minutes to work and back, I rarely had the time or energy to exercise, cook for myself, or visit with friends. Living a healthful life was a priority that I knew would be easier once I’d sold the house and moved into an RV. It feels like I’m midway across the bridge between living a traditional life and inventing a whole new way of being for myself.

Fall Creek Falls bridge 1

Already my interior and exterior life are realigning and coming back into balance. I’m losing a pound a week without trying. Cooking scrumptious, nutritious. wheat-free meals every day. Exercising in my favorite ways: yoga and meditation in the mornings followed either by hiking, kayaking or contra dancing most days. There is also ample time for reading, blogging, napping, and exploring. I’m learning to play the mandolin and am making steady progress. At my age, it takes a while to learn a new skill, but I find my patience with myself is really growing. My patience with other people is improving, too!

Most strikingly, my relationships with others are more friendly, warm, and quicker to connect than ever before. While hiking this week, I’ve run into countless family groups and offered to take their photos as a group in front of beautiful vistas. It makes me happy to see healthy, caring families enjoy nature together. And I don’t feel alone anymore like I did sitting in my house by myself. There’s actually a deeper sense of community out here on the road than in places I’ve lived for years. Tonight, another solo female RVer is coming over for dinner and to swap info on favorite hiking spots.

So many non-essential activities that used to consume my days have dissipated. I still work part-time online, and love the freedom and flexibility of this job, plus being a regular blogger. But most of the places I’ve parked are wi-fi free zones, and some don’t get any data connections or cell signals at all. At first I was anxious about not being connected to folks on Facebook, WordPress, or other websites on a daily (OK, I confess, hourly) basis, but now I am outdoors living a real adventure instead of a virtual electronic existence.

Fall Creek Falls baby.jpg

Today I sat in swirling creek water up to my midriff and meditated for a while in the sunshine. The sounds of moving waters, murmuring voices, and singing cicadas were so… I’m not sure what the word is, but I caught the essence of “Oneness”. After six weeks of living in the moment, letting go of the past, breathing in fresh air, sunshine and hope, I feel like a child again. Young at heart.

 

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