LIB Story Ticket Winner #2 – Finding Your Other Half
Posted by: Y2
Before Lightning in a Bottle, I was a closet yogi living in lack. I had been since the age of 14 when I began discovering my inner strength. However, I was embarrassed at how connected I was with everything because those types of people seemed to be at the butt of every joke. Especially in my family. So I remained chanting and meditating behind the confinement of my bedroom door hiding behind designer clothes and a thick layer of bronzer, usually complaining about how broke I always was.
By the time my friend showed me a Youtube clip of LIB, I knew I had a divine appointment waiting for me. It was time to break out of my cocoon.
Arriving at LIB for the first time
As soon as I arrived in the parking lot, my heart both relaxed and pattered with excitement. I was meeting people left, right, up, and down who were the embodiement of my dreams and exactly who I wanted to be: free. Totally free. I met people travelling the world, living out of busses, throwing judgement and caution to the wind in honor of that something indescribable. That something that makes sea shells grow, that nectar that we taste when we have a first kiss with someone we love….that wordless experience poets lose their mind over describing, and what the West has long forgotten. I saw it in all their faces and I was hungry for it.
So, like I planned I ditched my friends, and asked the festival to show me everything I needed to become who I was always scared of. I was on a mission of discovery, of enchantment. And boy did I find it. I found it over. And over. And over again. And over again once more.
On the first night, I was by myself running. I didn’t know where to or why but I couldn’t stop running and laughing through hula hoops, passing gypsies, jumping over blankets of people, I felt like I was a 5 year old squealing with joy all over the place. When I suddenly felt the urge to stop.
The Meeting – She was actually glowing pink
There was a couple sitting on a blanket and before I know it, we’re not only talking, but the girl grabs my arm and we run to the front of the Bamboo stage swirling in more joy than anyone told me existed. And the most beautiful indescribable thing happened: I swear to you, all around her turned pink. She was actually glowing pink. And besides a shot or two of vodka I was totally sober. But there this girl was, totally pink and oozing the type of presence that made Marilyn Monroe famous. This smile that is probably one of the most beautiful sights I’ve seen to date. After we danced and laughed together over nothing, we kissed a kiss I will never forget. It still makes me shiver when I think about it, 2 years later. We did not sleep a wink that night laughing and exploring one another, watching the artists paint at Lightning in a Paintcan…we watched this one artist, Christina Angelina, paint the most alive painting either one us had ever seen. At the time we saw it, it was just a pair of eyes and the beginning of the rest of a face. We stopped and stared at this painting of this face. How did she look that alive, but still just be a sketch on a canvas? We were blown away. After listening to all the different types of music and watching the sunrise, we parted ways and promised to see each other later that day to give each other our clothes back and to, of course hang out with one another. We had found our other half. We could relax finally, so it seemed. The first night was worth the price of admission.
Unfortunately, that’s now how life would have it. I did not see her that day, nor that night. Instead, I was again, on my own exploring and having fun with everything and everyone around me that I ALMOST didn’t notice her not being with me.
I proceeded to come out of my shell further, dancing on stage with Panty Raid, (after being ushered off by a man on stilts that is), I laid in a chair and had toning bowls placed all over me to realign me further, I was continuing to be blessed by volunteering at the Awesome Sauce kitchen eating the best food serving the most beautiful adventurous souls I had never thought of… so that by the third night I was flying so high I just took some time to relax and look at all the finished paintings.
And there she was. The painting by Christina Angelina we had watched being created two nights prior. It was finished and it was more beautiful and straight up more ALIVE than I could stand. It was just of a girl looking over her shoulder with a smirk of knowingness. Of Knowing who she was and where she came from and where she was going that her simplicity was its message. She just WAS. I had to have it. So I went straight to the silent auction table and put down my bid for $510 (a number I quite basically pulled out of my ass, especially since the starting bid began at $300 and no one else had even put down their name down…) plus my name and number for her painting. After another gorgeous night, I woke up at 6 am wondering if I had actually won that painting, slightly freaking out because I did not have $510 to my name. Not even close to it. I worked at a coffee shop minimum wage paying for college and rent for chrissakes…
I went to the paintings and found out I won it! I was shocked. But surprisingly happy. This epic painting was mine!! I just had to figure out a way to pay for it now…
Monday at 4 o’clock rolled around and the entire campsite was packed up. Nothing was left where my soul mate once stayed. I was both crushed but at peace with her gone because I knew what we had no way could survive outside of a festival. After all, neither one of us were gay, let alone ready to share what we had with the world. On top of it all, there was no way of tracking one another down even if I wanted to. All I knew was her first name was Lorraine and that she worked at a Starbucks in San Diego and all she knew about me was my first name, Alahna and that I too worked at a coffee shop but in San Luis Obispo. So that was it. Now I had to figure out where to come up with $510.
Or so it seemed…
The Phone Call
Several days later, I was working at my local coffee shop when I answered the phone.
“Hello, Nautical Bean Café, how may I help you?”
“Hi, who is this?”
My boss walked in. “Hey Dee, did you just call to see who was working?”
Several hours go by and the phone rings again to which my boss answered. I over hear him repeating himself.
“But if this is not an emergency, then I cannot interrupt her. She is working. Call her on her cell phone. Thanks. Bye…hey Alahna tell your friend Lorraine not to call you at work again.”
My heart dropped to the floor and I put down the drink I was making.
“What did you say?” I could barely move.
“I said tell your friend Lorraine or whatever her name was that you cannot take personal phone calls at work and to call you on your cell phone.”
I was absolutely speechless. I turned bright red and purple and could not stop laughing. There was no way I could explain to my coworkers what had just happened so I had to wait an agonizing 3 more hours until my break when I could call her back. Of course that meant I had to go through the hundreds of take out numbers that called in those past few hours to guess what time she had called. I had a good feeling about one number. I pressed dial.
“Hi….uhhh is this Lorraine?” I asked absolutely feeling like a blind person in the middle of a busy street.
“Yes…is this Alahna!!”
“Oh my god yes! HOW DID YOU FIND ME?”
“Of course I looked you up, I just googled coffee shops in San Luis Obispo on my break and had a good feeling about the first one that came up…then you actually answered the phone! I couldn’t believe it so I hung up.”
“That was you!! I thought you were my boss…oh my god, it makes so much sense now.”
We laughed like crazy blown away that we got to reconnect.
She tells me she’s moving to Paris for the summer but wants to visit me when she comes back. I am again, blown away, as I used to live in Paris. I took French as my major in college.
As I am sitting on my best friends’ bed recalling her this magical story, I tell her I also have some bad news. That I put down $510 for a painting and won it…so now I have to come up with $510 and have ZERO idea where to come across it.
She explains to me that my disappointment is not from not having the money but in the discord I feel from abundance. If I want the painting, then the Universe will rearrange itself for me to have it.
I decide to listen. To act from that place of abundance that I felt when I wrote down that number.
I call my dad up and ask him if I have some sort of savings I don’t know about, half way joking because I know his broke ass doesn’t have any saved up money for me. He tells me it’s funny I should ask him because he does have $500 that he had started for a college savings account he never got around to tell me about since I started getting financial aid.
Oh my god! When is the magic ever going to stop?!
“Well, since I am getting financial aid…do you think I could use that money for rent and food since I just spent a weekend away…?” I cringe. I know my dad. Once when I asked him for $1 in high school he asked what for. I told him it was to get some milk at the cafeteria. He tells me we have milk at the house and if I want to take some to school we have water bottles I can fill up…asking him for $500 point blank for no real reason is like asking the principal to have recess all day.
“Sure. Why not? It’s your money anyway. I will transfer the money tomorrow, if that works for you.”
When she returns from Paris, she has all my clothes from the festival in hand and the moment that we reunited eradicated any thoughts that we couldn’t be together in the real world. We were wearing nearly the same exact outfit: a short floral dress, multiple long necklaces, more glitter than any college graduate should wear, and we each were wearing a headband. We embraced and she has been adopted into my family, and I hers. While she has moved to Austin, Texas and I have moved to North Shore, Oahu, we are still very much and always will be, together. She is hands down my soul mate (one of them at least) and I have been honored and humbled by our connection. Lorraine has broken open my heart for good and my life has not been close to the same without her. As for, Ananda (the painting by Christina Angelina we named her) is a constant reminder of the abundance I am steeped in. I since have not had any complaints of lack since I’ve realized we can ask for whatever we need
Thank you for having the space for abundance, TRUE love to happen, form, and continue to ripple through the galaxy. You guys are important people. And do not forget it
submitted Alahna Caughey