A year ago I was stuck on the side of the road in Nowhere, South Carolina (not a real town). I had struck a deer in my rental car and I was unable to continue my drive to the coast. A seemingly random event that, all things considered, was really just a random event has actually changed the course of my life. I look back at a year ago and the heavy heart that I carried around with me. I was newly divorced, had a really bad experience with an ex over the 2016 Christmas holiday, and was in such a bad place. The open roads of Georgia and South Carolina called to me. I needed the time and the space and the open road to just think and ponder how I would lift myself out of the dark place I was in.
I flew from Honolulu, Hawai'i to Atlanta, Georgia. I had not planned to hang with family in Georgia but I selected Georgia specifically because I had family nearby. I like having the comfort of knowing that people I can count on could be called on in the case of an emergency. I was searching for something, anything, to make my heart happy again. My intention was to find that place in me through the silence of the dark roads and the seemingly endless open highway. As I picked up my rental car, I chose to travel east, south east to the eastern shores of South Carolina and Georgia. I wanted to look out onto the Atlantic Ocean to see if maybe I could find a new ocean to love - far away from the Pacific.
I have a love affair with the ocean. I will never stop loving the ocean and the feeling of being submerged in its waters. The Pacific, though, reminded me of all the good times I have had with the two loves of my life - both are ex-husbands now - and I just wanted to run away. Run far away from the place that I loved so much. I was hungry for new experiences and new places. I wanted to let my hair down and find the authentic me that was so caged up in Hawai'i. I wanted to run away from the pain and the hurt that I felt at the hands of my newly single ex-husband. I wanted to love him forever and I suppose a part of me always will feel that way but I needed to run away.
5:30 p.m. I pull out of the Atlanta-Hartsfield airport and make my way to I20-E. I drove for hours and hours through Augusta, GA through Columbia, SC. As I made my way toward Myrtle Beach, I pulled off the interstate and onto the lonely county highways. It was dark, so very dark, and I found myself so lost in the sadness and grief that was my life. Nothing like a broken heart to bring a person face to face with all of their flaws and brokenness. I felt alone.
I was just an hour away from Myrtle Beach when I hit the deer. It took hours for the tow truck to get to us because I was in such an isolated location. My cell phone didn't work, the State Trooper took about thirty minutes to get to me. The whole experience had brought me to my knees and illuminated all of my hurt places - not physical hurt but the emotional broken down places inside of me. The tow truck took me to the nearest town and dropped me off at a hotel where I checked in to hunker down for the night.
And then I met someone.
The electric between him and I was thick and so tangible. There is no way to duplicate that kind of fireworks and that kind of chemistry. I am still at a loss when I think of that evening. A seemingly random event like hitting a deer and wrecking my car has changed the course of my life.
Fast forward one year and here I am in South Carolina. I am settled in and about to buy a house on my own. It's all rather bittersweet for me because I have been married for all of my adult life, it seems. I have always had a partner to help me make decisions, especially the big ones like buying a house. There was always someone to share financial responsibility for the household. And here I am doing it all.by.myself. But this is what I wanted - new adventures, new beginnings, and that is the life I have chosen for myself.
And that someone that I met?
The conversation has been ongoing since that fated evening. #1yearLater