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The Long Answer... to the question: Have you really lost your mind this time???

When I first started thinking of becoming a fulltime RVer, I was full of fears and apprehension about it, but as happens so many times, what finally moved me from my "I can't possibly do that" position looked like a great curse at the time and turned out to be a great blessing. At the time, it seemed there was no other logical choice for me except to go back to what I had always known - the security of a full time legal secretary job. But my heart was having none of that - whenever I thought of it or made a move in that direction, I literally felt sick to my stomach. I knew there had to be another answer but no one was letting me in on the secret.

It would have made more sense to save money, stay close to home and spend all my time looking for a job. Instead, I decided to attend a spiritual retreat by Neale Donald Walsch, the author of the Conversations with God books. Again, what could not possibly be rationally justified turned out to be one of the wisest investments in myself I've made. Not only was the setting in Sedona incredibly inspiring, but just one of the numerous things I learned was that I could do anything I really want to do. It may not come in the form I envisioned with what it would take to make my dreams possible (winning the lottery for example), but God has given me everything I need to be creative enough to manifest what I really want, even if I have to work really hard for it. I was re-minded that I can create what I want - especially if I don't limit spirit by dictating what form it must come in.

We all have this choice: let go of our dreams or let go of the excuse why we can't have our dreams. With a little faith, creativity, courage and work, it is possible to excuse the excuse instead of the dream.

Once I searched my heart, found my faith and made up my mind, things fell into place at an incredible rate! Nothing but miracles and angels have come my way since I started seriously thinking of this odyssey. When hearing of my plans, people seemingly dropped out from the heavens to help me. They kept using the word "inspiration" to describe their reaction to what I was doing and they wanted to help, even if was just encouraging and inspiring me to follow my dream. That's why that word became so important to me and why I chose that as the name for my home.

One of the most amazing miracles was the revelation my mom came to. Needless to say, she was not happy with my decision - saw it as absolutely crazy, irresponsible, not to mention what she felt it was doing to her life since we lived right next door to each other and she believed she needed me there. It led to a bit of dissension and stress between us. But she came over one morning and said "I know you might think this is crazy, but God talked to me last night. He told me you are on a mission and I was to help you. I don't think you're crazy anymore and I will do all I can to help you." She has always told me she wished she had the guts to do the "crazy" things I've done, but I am inspired by the guts she shows in being as open minded as she is, especially at an age when most people feel perfectly justified in having an opinion and sticking with it no matter what and well past the point where it serves their highest purpose.

When I first started looking, I was thinking about a 24' class C model. I wondered how in the world I could drive something that big because even driving a van made me nervous back then. I had been working with Rob Hoffman at Crestview RV and after not finding anything that felt right, he advised that for what I was looking to do (live fulltime in it and drive around the country), I should consider a Class A motorhome. I stood outside the front of one of those and refused to even go inside - no way I could drive something that big and intimidating looking!

But the next indispensable angels who appeared were the people who sold me my RV home. There is not a doubt in my mind that this was a serious case of kismet that got us together.Rob was the salesman who sold them their last 3 RVs. He knew they wanted to sell and he was working with me, who wanted what she couldn't afford. We were the perfect match so he took himself out of the loop and put us together directly. Tell me this was not divine providence - a used RV salesman who cared more about his customers than his commission - a retired couple who cared more about who was buying their "baby" than their profit because they knew how much I would appreciate it. They have become dear friends and they are thrilled to have a part in my journey. I have vowed to carry on the gifts they have extended to me by continuing the circle every chance I get.

So, what did I end up with? A monster 37' Class A motorhome!

My home became a 2000 Winnebago Itasca Sunflyer - an amazing machine that has every option known to the RV world - even a combo washer/dryer unit! Surround system that will rock your world - a true home on wheels, not just an RV. Anyway, an amazing deal and the perfect home for me. I am thunderstruck at how blessed I am and how often I forget that.

I have often said through the years that I bought the huge windshield with the expansive view and figured I'd better learn to drive the rest of it! And like so many fears, the reality of doing it was much less fearful than my thoughts about it.

People also say they couldn't imagine not having a stable home and what would they do with all their "stuff?" I am fortunate that I have been able to keep my home in Austin. I have leased my side of the duplex that my mom and I own which gives me enough for the mortgage and the RV payment. It was an interesting process going through all my stuff to see what is really important to me and what can be let go of. I was able to cull through it all and save everything I wanted in a 10x10 building I had built in the backyard.

And it's not like I don't have a home - I just have one whose backyard changes all the time... sometimes it's a forest in a state park, sometimes a lake, sometimes an ocean, sometimes a WalMart parking lot, what the hell... I still have everything I need with me all the time - my own bed, my own bathroom, my own kitchen and best of all, all my clothes - I never have to worry if I have forgotten to pack something. Most importantly, for the first time in a long time, I can honestly say I love my life and look forward to every day.

In retrospect, the first angel who inspired me in this quest was my best friend and greatest inspiration, Don. When his wife of over 40 years wanted a divorce, he was heartbroken, but did not give up on life. He bought an Airstream and started touring the country. We continued to communicate by email, and I was jealous of his travels, but it never crossed my mind at the time that I could do anything like that. He was an integral part of making all of my dreams possible, and his generous spirit and hilarious sense of humor made my journey more enjoyable than I even imagined it would be. It was more of a blessing than I can describe that he joined me, initially to show me the ropes of the road, and was the best traveling companion I could imagine for almost two years.

One of the things I'm learning in this journey is how to accept gifts. I say I want to do things, and then when people offer to help me achieve my goals, I don't want to accept their help - like that's a sign of weakness. I want to do it myself and if I can't go it alone, I just won't do it. That just won't work anymore. Like Don told me when I balked at accepting all the help he so graciously offered: "You tell me all the time that I am your angel - so when an angel gives you a gift, you don't refuse it." I've thought a lot about that, and I've come to realize that I can't pray for my dreams to come true and then refuse them if they don't come in a package wrapped just precisely the way I want them. That's like putting an ad in the paper and then taking your phone off the hook. People are calling to answer your request but you're just not hearing them - that is wasted effort if nothing else. The dream is what is important - if I am given miracles and angels and gifts along the way, I should be thankful and accept -- and keep the movement of such gifts flowing - don't jam up the works with resistance. I will be the one on the other end of the giving circle at some point and I would want my gifts to be received as graciously and freely as I want to give them.

I still listen to my theme song and try to move through my day "With Arms Wide Open." I am getting more comfortable in that seeming insecurity. I finally accept that my life is better led by spirit than by logic - that when I let spirit and heart guide me, the way is always paved even if it appears bumpy. Even when I don't fully understand and call events that I don't agree with "negative" or "wrong" - that even then it's unfolding as it should. And God has so much more in mind for us than we do for ourselves. In our grandest dreams and our deepest wishes of what we want for ourselves - what God wants and envisions and believes us capable of - is far more superlative than our limited thinking can conceive of in ourselves.

So, having had incontrovertible proof of this belief in spades lately, I have no problem any more with not knowing exactly what my next stop will be - or for how long. It just doesn't all need to be decided all at once - just trust that what is out there will be what you make of it - that that is all the control you need...not every detail planned out to the tiniest point. I trust - and God trusts me - that's all I need. And with surrender to this principal comes peace.

Of course I still have fears and insecurities sometimes. I get my little panic attacks and when I do I tend to get upset with myself. After all the proof I've been given, it seems unforgivable to keep questioning and doubting. I got up one morning when I didn't have a job to go to that day and asked God if it was OK that I was so scared. I then heard his answer very clearly through my heart: "Of course it's okay - in fact it's even necessary. If you were 100% sure and had every detail lined up and all the money you needed to begin with, then this journey would not be so inspiring - not for you and not for anyone else who heard about it or encountered you during it. And while it's ok to be concerned and take whatever steps are necessary to make the money you need, you can also trust that you will be taken care of and your needs will be met. You have all the talent and resources you will ever need and I will be with you - you cannot fail."

I was then again reminded of one of my favorite quotes from a book entitled "A Tree Full of Angels - Seeing the Holy in the Ordinary."

"When we walk to the edge of all the light we have and take that step into the darkness of the unknown, we must believe that one of two things will happen ... there will be something solid for us to stand on, or we will be taught to fly."

I've always wanted to fly, and love the feeling of flying in my dreams, so I will continue to be a willing student.

I hope to touch everyone I meet along this journey in a positive way - to be an instrument and demonstration of all that is possible for every one of us. If nothing else, I should be able to prove if I can do something this seemingly improbable, then so can anyone else.

Growth can be painful and challenging sometimes, but ultimately if we don't do it, we die in one way or another. This journey will be crammed with growth - and maybe sometimes I'll be afraid and maybe sometimes I will have doubts - but I vow to never stop testing my wings. If given the choice, I choose adventure over sameness. As reminded by a great book I just read "Listen to the Drum" by Blackwolf Jones:

"Where there is fear, there is a master. Either you will master fear or fear will master you. But there will be a master."

Although I may not have mastered fear, I have discovered that I can move through it and not be paralyzed by it anymore.

and the road goes on forever, and the journey never ends...
Copyright by Malia Lane - all rights reserved