It’s been a while…

June 7, 2009 at 3:41 pm Leave a comment

and so much has happened. I haven’t been writing, as I don’t have internet yet. I signed up for it at the beginning of May. They said it would take two to three weeks. Yesterday I got a call that they would send someone on June 29th. That frustrated me, but in the spirit of the past several weeks, I thought to myself: “Okay, make the most of it.”

I must admit, the computer-free time has been not so bad at all. My daughter and I moved into the new apartment a month ago. Without internet chats etc., we’ve spent quite a lot of time together talking, looking at old photographs, reading, listening to music, and simply being quiet. I’ve also slept quite a bit, which I’d expected. The relief at leaving the house and little town where I’d moved 5 years ago but never really felt happy in led me to relax and simply be.

The other day I found a book in my son’s room that he should read for school. I mentioned it to my daughter. She grabbed the book and spent the next 6 hours reading! It reminded me a bit of old times. As a child she read a lot, but since internet moved in… not much.

I don’t know where to begin. After two weeks of simply being, marvelling at my new surroundings and the fact that I’d finally made a clear decision – for ME – and followed through, I began to settle in. The apartment still isn’t “finished” yet – I’m waiting for one more cabinet, and for the phone/internet/TV connection. I wanted a TV-free apartment, but made the concession to my daughter. She’ll have a TV in her room. I’m not thrilled, but I can’t force my idealism on her.

The past week or so I’ve felt the sensation of being alive. I am now living the life that I had dreamed about some 25 years ago. Back then I had my own apartment – a tiny studio on 57th Street in Manhattan. I dreamed of living the bohemian life, but was so caught up in being an anorexic bulimic that I didn’t really have the time or energy to do what I wanted. But the dream never left me.

The strange thing is, the hardest part really was the decision to leave. Once that was made, a wave of energy entered my body and is still there. I worked like crazy, packing stuff, filling my car, transporting it to the new apartment. My daughter and I nearly starved, because we were so busy with moving that we never quite got around to eating. I lost a few pounds in the process, but I’m sure I’ll find them again. It is not a cause of concern.

Originally I planned to write all the details, but I think I’ll skip that and stick to the most important. Last weekend we had a sunny Sunday. I went out for a walk, taking “A Woman Speaks” from Anais Nin. I’d read her diaries as a young adult and was impressed. Recently it occurred to me that I didn’t know anymore what had impressed me about her writing. So I took the aforementioned volume off my bookshelf and set off. The old city is about 10 minutes’ walk from here. The outdoor cafés were all full, so I kept walking, and ended up at a café on the other side of the river that runs through the city. I sat in the sun, drank a cup of hot chocolate, and read for an hour or so. Walking home, I thought to myself: “This is how I imagined life would be!”

That evening I went to see a film that I’d been wanting to get to – the timing was right. I got there early, bought my ticket, and went to the café next door for a glass of wine and read a few more pages in the book. It was a mild June evening. When the movie was over, it was still light out! I walked home and was overcome by a rush of emotion: This is my life! I am living the life I wanted! I have an apartment with enough space, I have a morally acceptable job with irregular hours, I have plenty of free time, I have my books and music, my cat, and what I didn’t plan on back then: two wonderful teenagers!

I have arrived! It’s almost embarrassing to admit that it took me 25 years. But that’s what can happen when you don’t trust your intuition, don’t listen to your heart, and are deathly afraid of making a mistake. It takes a while. But perhaps because it took so long, I treasure it that much more. That’s a different – and refreshing – perspective.

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Entry filed under: On my own. Tags: , , , , .

It’s taking longer What has changed?

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