The 6th Dryer Ball

It has been over two years. I have traveled thousands of miles. I have carried with me five of six dryer balls. Then, out of nowhere, as I was finalizing my exit from Washington, closing this last loop of my life, the sixth dryer ball appeared. What a message that sent.

In April of 2019, I left my home in Pullman and hit the road. I sold most of my belongings, my house, quit my professional job, packed the Jeep and headed out for adventure. Among the things I deemed important enough to take with me were my wool dryer balls. I wear some pretty expensive performance-based clothes and I knew I would be using public laundry mats. I don’t trust these machines and wanted to take steps to protect and preserve my investments. I deemed the dryer balls as important enough to give valuable and scarce space. They were coming with me!

The kicker was that I had six dryer balls for years. I bought them as a set and used them as such. They lived in my dryer and were happily in every load of laundry. As I completed the process of closing out an entire household, I could only find five dryer balls. I mean, my house was empty! Where could that sixth ball be? Where could it have gone? There was literally nothing left and yet, no dryer ball. I tore my laundry area apart looking for the one last dryer ball. I never found it. 

Six Dryer Balls

Naturally, that did not stop me from my planned life on the road. I camped and hiked and traveled and visited. I accomplished all my goals. I started year two as planned, volunteering/working where I wanted to spend more time and explore. Well, COVID fucked up the world and my plans. Hell, all our lives went sideways. I was never out of work and I never worked at home. In fact, the service and tourist industry has been busier than ever. I landed on my feet. As I transitioned from one gig to another, I planned to be on the road for a while. I mean, that was the goal, to travel and explore. Sadly, the road was just not the same. I have yet to really figure out if that is because of the changes to our world or changes to me. In either case, I was just not as happy as I was before. The road was no longer the road for me and I was no longer loving it. Sure, it was nice to be back outside and seeing new things, new places, yet something was amiss.

I went on to my job at Big Bend National Park in Southwest Texas. I planned a six month term, leaving before the dreaded triple digit heat of summer. It did not take long for me to fall in love with this place! I secured full-time, permeant status and have had a blast exploring and learning about my new home. Despite these good feelings, something was still amiss. I still had one outlier, one dangling participle, one part of my life yet unresolved. I still had a storage unit in Washington that was jammed full of the last of my personal belongings. I was free and unencumbered, except for this. This issue of my stuff was like a thorn in my side and needed closure.  


My goal was to resolve the issue. Some of these things are family heirlooms and keepsakes that are priceless. Some of these things were packed away in a desperate attempt to deal with my fears and insecurities as I hit the road of adventure as an unemployed, homeless woman. These are things I have not seen, used, or handled in over two years. Yet, knowing these things were out there gnawed at me like the angst I had before I left my life of convention. This had to be put to rest!

I set the wheels in motion and the Universe responded. I obtained a storage unit closer to my new home in Texas and I created a plan to move my belongings. I had my plane ticket and most details worked out. I have learned that when I am on the “right” path, the path the Universe has called me to, I do not need to schedule every detail. The Universe will provide. Time and time again this truth is revealed as I move about the world in new and exciting ways. 

Thousands of miles, a couple time zones, and many hours later, I arrived at my storage unit that was filled over two years ago. I opened the door, carefully, as items were packed to the brim. I stared at this mountain of stuff. I reached out and touched the first few containers. I opened one to take a peek. A dryer ball fell out. A white, wool dryer ball. Oh yes, here it was, falling out of the first container I opened. 

That elusive sixth dryer ball showed itself to reminded me that I am on the “right” path, I am listening to the Universe and acting accordingly. That dryer ball revealed itself mere moments after that door opened. That dryer ball was a sign that I was “coming home”. That sixth dryer ball was destined to join the other five, just as the rest of my worldly goods were destined to join the rest of my life in Texas. I was closing this circle of my life. That felt really good.

I smiled and shouted just a little as I embraced and held up that dryer ball. The 6th dryer ball! I found it after all this time. Finally, resolution. Finally, closing the last gap in this loop. 

The dryer ball, my belongings, and my self are safely nestled back in Texas. The dryer ball is now with the other five. They are home with me, safe and sound. I am still in awe and disbelief that this seemingly foreign place that is so vastly different from whence I came feels like home. Yet, for right now, it is. Just me and my dryer balls. LOL 

Cheers to closing the loops, resolving that “one thing”, and quieting those voices that nag. Cheers to peace wherever it is found. 

Cheers to resolutions! 

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