Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Voyuerism....of another kind.......................

(peaking in on life in San Francisco - cool housing)

I've been reading a lot of blogs this week. I've been finding all kinds of inspiration and perspective. I've talked about living with regret a few times on this blog and although I keep promising myself I will let go of the regret, I continure to find myself wondering what my life would have been like if I had done things differently when I was a young person. You know, picked a different door.....

I guess this is what they call a mid-life crisis, only in my case, no one is going to get hurt......I'll just continue to be confused and unsettled, restless and regretful. I made a couple of statements in passing about wishing I had the guts to move to San Francisco and live.....those that 'heard' me, encouraged it....asked me, "why not?" I can come up with all kinds of excuses, but, no real reason for why not. I love that city, I really do, but, something about it seems lonely and as much as I like being alone, sometimes, I get lonely and San Francisco is a place that being alone, just might get lonely, more often than not. Again, I can come up with all kinds of excuses why I shouldn't/couldn't/ won't move there....at least right now I can.

I feel like I spend my life in a series of episodes, where I'm waiting for the next part of my life to start. When I moved in to care for my grandmother I knew that 'another' part of my life would start once she was gone and after she was gone and I was handling the estate's business, I would start my life once that was done and then, once that was done, I went to jeweler's school and when that was done I would start my life......do you see the pattern? And I think I have lived my whole life this way, waiting for my life to start. And, I keep getting these cosmic notices that I should be paying attention to life everyday as I live it, but, do I listen? Hell NO, I just keep stumbling through trying to keep my head above water....maybe that's what is going on with me, I always feel like I'm just barely keeping my head above water and I'm just so damn tired of doing that.

I'm a smart girl, everyone says so and really, I know I'm a smart girl, but, I am also a small town girl....not small town, like actually living in a small town, I mean a small town mentality. I have been places, like England, France, Belgium, Holland, Texas and Georgia and Upstate New York , Pennsylvania and I've even been to the Jersey shore, but, I have mostly been unaware, except for Georgia, I was young when I went to these other places and couldn't really appreciate what I was experiencing, but, I digress, small town mentality, I don't venture out too far from my little neighborhood and the blogosphere has made me painfully aware of my small-townness and produced restlessness in me. Although I mask it, most of the time with false cynicism, I still get hurt and surprised when things don't turn out like I thought they would and alot of times I take people at their word, even when it sounds too good to be true.....so, I stay where I am, because at least I KNOW where I am and there is no risk in it. Moving to San Francisco would be a HUGE risk and therefore, a possible disappointment and these kinds of thoughts are what hold me back, keep me restless for something MORE.

This is what this blog is for, discussing how to recover from a life not lived. Someone who was my friend for a time threw the name of my blog in my face....she said, "I would NEVER have a blog named recovery from a life not lived because I'm not afraid to go out and look for what I want even if it goes against convention." (or something to that effect). And, although it hurt and pissed me off, she was right. In other words, she was fearless and I am a chicken shit.....

I keep telling myself going to nursing school is going to open sooooo many doors for me, that moving to San Francisco would actually become a very real possibility for me and I think that scares me. I won't have any excuses for holding back, I will have the means to go virtually anywhere I want and have a marketable skill. I won't be small-town anymore.

This stuff is very real for me, living with the fear of stepping out and not believing that I deserve to have a big life. One time a few years back my Aunt and I were having a serious talk, (my Aunt is my go to person when I'm really trying to figure things out) and I was sharing with her that I thought I was meant for something big, something more than what I was doing and that I was feeling like my life was suffocating me and she told me that she always thought that God had bigger plans for me, that I was meant for something great and as she was saying it, it felt real, like she knew something I didn't. This was an very important conversation for me, because I respect her immensely and she always seems to have the inside track on life and it's mysteries. From that point on, I really believed that there was something big out there waiting for me.....but, sometimes I wonder if that didn't contribute to my thought that 'someday my life will begin' rather than knowing that the stuff I was doing everyday was the stuff LIFE is made up of.

I love the blogosphere, it has actually drawn me out of myself, perhaps the irony won't be lost here, as I don't actually ever have to leave my bedroom to go out into the blogoshpere, but, it has pulled me out into 'the world', where I am seeing what the possibilities are. The fact that I can read about Denmark where Julochka at Moments of perfect clarity shares stories of her life and adventures and Extranjera at What will I ever do with my life shares with us about her expat life globetrotting all over the place and Violet dear at Madness and Beauty shows us how to backpack through Asia and Spud and Bee share with us about their lives in England (where I am sure I was actually meant to be born because I totally LOVE England in a very ancient kind of way) and of course, Tangobaby showing us how beautiful and enticing San Francisco is. All of these blogs inspire me to want more to want to be more to quit 'waiting for my life to start'.


Extranjera said...

I think you're already having a big life, maybe what you are looking for is a different kind of big life? However, what would it be that would make your life big? A change of surroundings, or just the acceptance of the now as something meaningful? I think in the end, whether you feel like you are living the life you want to live is less about the actual circumstances and more about your own attitude towards those circumstances.

Regardless of having ample opportunity to exist in different cultures in a huge way, I think that by far my absolutely weightiest existence is right here in the blogosphere. And I think I'm actually okay with that. And kind of even like it that what greatly defines me is not tied to a specific place in the world, but is moveable instead.

Wow. Oddly deep. Sorry about that.

Bonnie Zieman, M.Ed. said...

As I was reading all your thoughts, I could feel you spiralling down into doubt and disappointment. Sometimes our thinking is our own worst enemy. Analysis = Paralysis. There is always another place more beautiful - another job more exciting - another lover more entrancing. Fall in love with yourself and you will be happy wherever you are, whatever you are doing. That's why all these exterior things seem so unsatisfactory for you. Life is telling you to go within.

Mobius said...

I think many of us struggle with what you describe here. I kept thinking as I read this... yes... I could have have written this.

So at the very least... you aren't alone.

Brian Miller said...

i can understand the feeling of living life in little episodes...i really feel that right now...waiting for the next to start...i do know this you desrve a life...usually that is found in the "stepping out" that you talk about...keep stepping....

julochka said...

this is really beautiful and it seems to me that if you are thinking these thoughts and articulating them so well, you have already taken the first steps into the realm of living the life you want to be living.

i think we all have a sense of waiting for what's next, i'm having it myself at the moment and feeling impatient because i can't see what the h*#& it is and i'd like to just get on with it already, thank you. :-)

i think blogging has helped me to slow down, look at the world around me and doing a better job of enjoying my life in the here and now. i am certain that the photography i've become interested in thru blogging has been a huge boon in that area as well. there's a lot of talk about "out there" about living mindfully and in the moment, but there is something to it. to enjoying right here and right now and not always agonizing about what's gone before and what might be ahead. because right here and now there is good food to be eaten, steaming coffees to be drunk, flowers (and lemon cucumbers) to be tended. and those are the things that make up life, not where you live or what you're going to be when you grow up.

at least that's what i'm working on believing.

you'll find your path and you'll be fine. whether it takes you to SF or not, who knows, just enjoy the ride.

i might have said it before (i'm writing a book here, i realize), but you should look up constantine cavafy's poem "ithaca," it's all about the journey and i refer to it often when i need a reminder about that.


Kandi said...

You should always do what you really want to do. If you have the opportunity to move to a place that you want to be, then you should try it. The worst that could happen is that you would regret the move and have to move back. That is how I ended up in NC, it was on a whim!

SE'LAH... said...

this is a beautiful post...quite open and honest. thanks so much for sharing with all of us. i think many people can relate.

one love, se'lah

Delena said...

I read your entry a couple of times before I was ready to comment. Here goes:
Yes, you are so right- life is a series of episodes but it is also so short. I felt like I had been slapped in the face when I heard Dr. Phil say " think of the time you have left in months and not years. Life is such a wonderful gift and time is a thief. "
My husband and I have done spontaneous things and risky moves our whole married life. We started off by getting married when I was 17 and he was 19. We moved from a big fancy house in a town out into the country. We leave it all behind in the winter and go south for warmth. Everyday I think to myself, "this is probably as best as it gets so enjoy today". I also think life is a journey so just go with it. Things usually turn out just fine.

Pat said...

This is such a honest and heartfelt post. It sounds to me like you'd really like to try San Francisco. It is possible to apply to a school out there? Then you know it's a temporary thing. You can get to know the city while going to school. You might feel more comfortable moving out there knowing that it's for a specific amount of time, although just moving out there at any time you can always move back, right? I think you are thinking too hard about this. Do you have too many "What if's?" in your life? Or "I should have"? What do you have to lose? Your best friend could be waiting for you in SF.

MLG said...

I identified with your post in particular to the part you shared about your relationship with your Aunt.

Just last night I shared with my Aunt who is my go-to person that I felt as though I was ready for a big change in my life. I shared I felt like I was turning a corner of sorts. Then, fear stepped in and I ended my email by stating 'at least I think I'm ready for a big change.' My Aunt's response was..."Oh you are ready for a BIG change. The part that said," at least I think I am", is the fear, ego. You are so verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry ready. I feel it in my bones. I love you, Honey."

I wanted to share my communication with my Aunt because your post reminded me of similar thoughts I have shared with my Aunt, and regardless of the type of fear I may have, my Aunt and my support system are there to help shake them right out of me.

Life is an adventure, and it is meant to be lived fearlessly one day at a time.

Thank you for sharing with such honesty and integrity.

Sharon Rose said...

I sat and read this thinking, "wow, your words, your thoughts remind me of the catapillar in the coccoon who has been "inside" long enough to know he's safe. He's ready to break free, try out his wings.

His wings were there long before they were visible. He just had to go inside for a time, and find them.

After that, he became wrestless and needed to get out.

Your thoughts are all valid, all deep and sincere and I'm just wondering what your wing span is going to look like when you open those beautiful wings of your!