Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Where There’s Smoke

It was a cool night in late spring and for some reason I was the only one sitting by the fire. My sister, brother-in-law, and nieces were elsewhere in camp. It was just me and my journal.

Despite the ample lumber teepee propped amongst the flames, I watched the fire slowly descend unto itself and turn to embers and smoke.

My immediate reaction was to throw more wood on; blow on it; try to get it back. No success.

I went to get my brother-in-law for help, leaving the fire unattended for several minutes.

When we returned, the embers had lit the wood and the fire was lapping the air in ferocious flicks. At the time I had a mini epiphany that maybe if I treated my relationships like the fire, they’d heat up. If I just left things alone and let them develop on their own, they’d end up where I wanted them. I sat back down and wrote about this in my journal.

When I talked to my boss about working abroad back on May 12, I could see the flames around me shrinking. For over a month, it was smoke and a few glowing coals. No answers. No light. A lot of tension and drafty feelings as I wondered whether the fire would somehow get stoked.

Closed-door meetings and exasperated glances followed. And I just had to wait to see if time and some oxygen might do the trick.

I am relieved to report that the fire is still going. It’s a little sputtery right now, but I should have enough of a blaze to keep me warm during the next 7 weeks.

12 comments:

Jane Moneypenny said...

When I was very young, someone told me that relationships are the fire and wind is the change. It can either blow it out or fuel it, making it stronger. Glad to see it's still there, both professionally and personally!

Semicharmed (Brandi) said...

Excellent.
Did you leave already? 7 weeks abroad, how amazing.

Mandy's Kidding said...

Bottom line: Jobs come and go, but 7 weeks in London is something that will stay with you forever.

Glad you took the leap.

Dingo said...

What an incredible adventure this is! It took guts to leave your job and do this but I really don't think you will regret it at all.

Mel Heth said...

Jane - That's a great analogy! And I think it's really true.

Semicharmed - I leave on Friday. :) I'm finally starting to get excited.

Mandy - London will stay with me forever, and thankfully the job is going with me there. I'm quite pleased that taking the leap led to getting to keep both.

Dingo - I didn't leave my job. :) I get to keep working while I'm over there - US hours - 4:00 in the afternoon until 1:00 in the morning. Now THAT will be an adventure!

geekhiker said...

So, basically, you're saying to let the wet wood in life dry out and the fire would ensue? That should be on a t-shirt somewhere...

justrun said...

Pretty awesome! You are going to love it! And I expect to hear all about it, crazy working hours or not. :)

laura said...

yay!!! it all worked out...can't wait to ready your blogs from abroad...

Transparent Mama said...

I love the phrase "drafty feelings." How fun to meet a fellow writer who it appears lives in the LA area as well. Thanks for coming by my blog.

Mel Heth said...

GH - Maybe that's your next business venture - cool outdoors-inspired t-shirts. :)

JustRun - I'm going to write as much as I possibly can while I'm there - so you should be well versed on my adventures.

Laura - I know! I hope I have some good ones about getting arrested for indecent exposure or making friends with packs of gypsies...

TransparentMama - Thanks. :) Yes I do live nearby - even went to your high school! Thanks for visiting MY blog!

brookem said...

so happy for you!
when do you leave?
did i just read though that you'll have to work 4pm-1am while you're there?! that will be an adjustment!

SoMi's Nilsa said...

The most important thing is that you're following your heart. How many of us make decisions solely based on a job or other obligations and leave our hearts high and dry? Now, go off and enjoy yourself!