It’s been said that we can never cross the same river twice… each time we return to the place from which we have departed, we are never the same.

A day at the office, a flurry of errands… the landscape across which we’ve traversed hardly matters. The point is that we are different, even subtly… the piercing eyes of a stranger, the sound of children’s laughter, tension at work. Every experience affects us from the most dramatic to indistinguishable.

Re-entry is one of my greatest challenges. Given the nature of my exploration to regions without the luxuries we enjoy-water, food, electricity, technology-I realize that I straddle between worlds and often not gracefully.

Perhaps it was the length of this trip… 3-months is a long time or maybe it’s because of the length of my silence… whatever the reason, I am profoundly changed, more than any other expedition I’ve ever made.

Returning to modernity’s franticness, consumption on many levels, the thundering white noise that often feels inescapable, these are just a few examples of ways that my senses feel overloaded. Secretly, I hope this sensitivity never fades. I appreciate the awareness that whispers, “This is mad.”

We live in a world bloated with information yet we are starved for wisdom. We’re connected 24/7 yet loneliness is at an all time high. We sooner reach for our mobile devices than for the hand of someone in need. “This is mad.”

I’ve never a whiner. I don’t intend to start now.

So what am I doing about it?

Speaking less.

Listening more and deeper.

Finding moments of silence in my day.

Whether going to the market or halfway around the world, each time we depart, we return anew.