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The Song in My Heart

How do the lyrics to that famous song go? “I left my heart in San Francisco?” Well, I have a better idea. I’m taking my heart to San Francisco.

2 more “sleeps” until I see my boy. I believe any parent knows what that means. It’s a measure of missing that started in our house when the kids went to sleepaway camp.

There’s another tune that is currently my ring tone. “Do You Know the Way to San Jose?” It serves as a simple reminder that my son Dylan is always just a phone call away. I chose that song as a playful tribute to acknowledge the miles that lay between us in his first “real world” endeavor since graduating from UNC Chapel Hill. Dylan’s office is in San Jose.

“Gone to Carolina in my Mind” was my fight song when he was in college and an anthem in our house. It even holds a hallowed place on my first yoga playlist which I created from a space of heart and soul. I chose songs I knew would bring me comfort as I taught for the very first time. Chapel Hill is one of my happy places. It is my alma mater as well as Dylan’s, and the place I was born. So when I say I’m a Tarheel born and a Tarheel bred, you can take that to the bank.

Today I begin what has become a time honored ritual of travel for me. I refer to it affectionately as an emotional “pre-pack”. Lying in bed this morning, I started mentally folding sweaters. I tucked in a few of my favorite hoodies, lots of yoga clothes as always and a coat. The California weather isn’t a bad thing.

I find myself humming the song “It Never Rains in California,” but if you go to the weather app on your phone, you’ll see a white puffy cloud with raindrops scattered over most of our visit, so I threw in a slicker as well. And that’s ok, because nothing is going to rain on my parade.

My intention for this vacation is first and foremost, to vacate- to remove myself from all things “real.” The Rosenberg cottage will be in the competent care of our dear friend whose purpose is to hold down the fort and cuddle with Cupcake. She gets anxious when she hears the wheels of the suitcases touch down and remains a bit shaky until the wheels of our airplane touch down. There is no greater love. In our house, it’s woman’s best friend and when she sees Mom walk through that front door, she breathes a huge sigh of relief, literally. It’s funny how the same noise that makes her anxious ultimately brings her such comfort.

My second intention is to see the world through Dylan’s eyes. I have gotten the clear sense that California is starting to feel like home. He has made a concerted effort to put himself out and boldly extend his hand in friendship over and over. Hmmm… wonder where he learned that? He has created a circle of people who feel good to him and he is living, in his own words, “his best authentic self."

I will, no doubt, look at his world through the same lens that helps me see clearly in my own world. There are just three words that come in the form of a question. Where will we EAT, PLAY and LOVE?

We are a foodie family. I’ve got the EAT category covered, and on some nights, we have two options in the event of a mood swing. Coveted dinner reservations were made as a result of an exhaustive search. It’s a comprehensive social media research process, which many of you participated in, so thank you for your delicious suggestions. I have allowed plenty of room for fun to unfold in the breakfast and lunch categories, while suggestions have been penciled in. We tend to eat our way through vacations. It’s the Rosenberg way and as a side note, it’s part of the Jewish religion to mark holidays and occasions with food. So maybe we are religious after all. Some people hike, we go on a culinary exploration.

PLAY will happen with ease. We enjoy doing the same things with our free time so that makes play, no work at all. The recipe for fun is tried and true. We’ll walk the streets of San Fran, window shopping and venturing into anywhere we want when the spirit moves us. I have compiled a laundry list of yoga studios to try and a just a few familiar faces to see.

And the LOVE will just happen organically because the three of us are together. The only thing missing will be our 4th, my sweet Eliza. She will be in her happy place celebrating her 20th birthday, surrounded by friends who love her as much as we do.

When Dylan packed up for college, I created a hashtag that I use endearingly #Rosenberg3. Alan and I have nurtured our relationship with Dylan in its own space and time out of necessity when he left, and have done the same with Eliza as she was still living at home. This past summer we had Dylan home from Europe for six weeks before he moved to California and Eliza was gone for four of them. When Dylan moved and started his job, we had Eliza for two weeks all to ourselves before we moved her into the DPhiE house at UF. Our current adventure is in San Fran with Dylan and next month when Eliza finishes her last final exam, she’ll hop on a plane and meet us in New York City, where she ultimately hopes to make her home. NYC is another happy place for me. Christmas time in the City is just plain magical and has become a holiday tradition in our family.

There is a certain nervous energy that stirs in me as I begin to think about taking a trip. What will it be like? Who will I meet? How will we fill our days? Will we all enjoy each other’s company? Will I have what I need? Will the world go on without us?

The flip side of nervousness is excitement. As the nerves quietly knock at my door, I notice that my body reacts. Even the best kind of change can create feelings of stress. Going through security at the airport, trusting that the pilot is competent, jumping in a cab with a driver, navigating your way around a place you are not familiar with; these are basic components of travel that create turmoil.

I am comforted by having faith in something larger than all of us. Whether you believe in God, the Keeper of the Stars or the Universe, there is more. And whether you pray, hope, or just keep your fingers crossed, there is an element of trust that comes into the equation.

It is easy to sleep walk through life and play it safe. Whether it’s a vacation or a life change, trying new things wakes up what may have fallen asleep in us. It gives us the chance to remember who we are. Our souls become energized.

I am ready for adventure in my life. This trip marks the first of many; next month New York City and next year Bali. I will travel halfway around the world next August to assist in a 200 hour yoga training. And that will be the final step I take toward my own 500 hour certification. A dream that found me out of sheer intention.

My hope for this getaway is that we eat, play and love- Rosenberg style. Our mission is to enjoy the little big things or perhaps it’s the big little things. I am reveling in having the opportunity to peek through a window and see what “California Dylan” looks like. And the best news of all is that he will be the one opening that window for us, our very own tour guide.

There’s been talk of day trips to Sonoma, Sausalito and stops along the way. We’ll finally get to check out the town of Mountain View and spend a few nights in Palo Alto where he is currently on a project. We’ll eat, drink and be merry. There’s a very good possibility that tears will be shed. They may be the outcome of a tender moment or a fabulous belly laugh. This trip is about exploring and finding home in everywhere we are. I am packing up my happy soul and taking it with me to sprinkle over everyone I meet along the way. There is something intriguing about going to visit our son in the home that he has created on his own; to see who he is without us and what he’s created because of us. I will take a photograph in my mind and look at it over and over. Sometimes the distance and the three hour time change make me feel as if he’s living in another world. And the truth is, it’s really just another coast.

I am reminded of the letter I wrote to him when he moved out of our house. It was chock full of real world wisdom and closed with the lyrics to the song in my heart that plays constantly, “Aint no mountain, high enough, aint no valley low enough, aint no river wide enough to keep me from getting to you.”

Wish us safe travels and of course, I’ll send pics. Namaste.

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