Questions that I am asking myself:
Are you willing to invest in yourself?
Are you willing to become stronger than your history?
Are you willing to forgive yourself?
Are you willing to forgive others?
Are you willing to stop being held hostage by the opinion of others?
Are you willing to be motivated by trust instead of fear?
Are you willing to let go of anger?
Are you willing to let go of your need to control?
Are you willing to know the truth?
Are you willing to be transformed?
Are you willing to operate from a place of authenticity?
Are you willing to live an inspired life?
Paris, the second round, was a much shorter visit. I spent about 48 hours in Paris, alone in Charlotte's empty studio flat. An incredible 48 hours, however.
Her walls were alive, simultaneously buzzing with energy and security. For being a small, studio flat it felt so perfect, not too big and not too small - something that Goldilocks would have approved of. Charlotte is a collector, nay, an admirer of the overlooked; her walls were adorned with found and created objects -sticks, mirrors, photographs, poems, handwritten letters- as if she had created her very own ritual space, protected from evil by her treasures. I slept soundly on her bed, a mattress on the floor, and in the morning threw open the drapes and windows to watch the people bustling about Rue de Saint Jacques.
I only had one size of paper, poor quality and torn from my sketchbook, but I felt that I couldn't waste the inspiration that this flat gave me and drew feverishly. I produced a drawing, with charcoal, of an old man that I had seen the night before at an empty bar. He was, and is, unforgettable in appearance: satellite disks of ears popped off his head at various angles and two large eyes were set into his heavily wrinkled face. I wasn't sure if he was still really cognizant of what was happening around him, or if he even cared. I left this drawing for Charlotte on her wall. I think it belongs to her in a way.
I helped a Muslim friend clean his flat and do his laundry. We spoke about religion. He asked me what I believed in, if I believed in God. I told him that I believe in energy, String Theory, Chakras and the power of the Universe, of karma...but he stopped me and said, "What does all of this mean? I didn't ask you about the Universe or energy. I am asking what Lindsay believes in her heart and what she will always believe." I paused. In what do I believe exactly? After a moment I told him: "I believe in love. I believe in the magic of love, love between people, love for the earth -- just love." He said, " Voila! Love is the most important thing to believe in."
At the bottom of it, what else is there to believe in?
I was told by a traveler I met during this second round in Paris that traveling alone will really mess with you at some point, it will become a cathartic experience, unsettling, lifting up, and clearing out years of emotional gunk. This traveler also told me that it will bring up questions and help me to redirect and refocus my life path. (Speaking of which, my life path -based on numerology- is a 6 which I find to be SO fascinating because it is spot-on...look yours up!) I was advised to buy a "wee travel bear" to talk to...at this point, buying a travel bear might not be such a bad idea because I am just BURSTING with revelations and INTENSE discussions that I am not certain any of my friends or random strangers will want to involve themselves in...