So uh, it’s been a while.
Last time I posted a “Thoughts” blog, I was sitting comfortably on a couch in Jenks library, on a college campus nestled in a nook of New England. Now, I am sitting quite uncomfortably in a squeaky chair, on a college campus spread out over 40 acres in Austin, Texas.
So let me update.
After losing my Mexico, I spent over a year soul-searching, trying to figure out what the hell I was doing with my life. I had planned a future around an orphanage in Mexico, and that future is no longer a possibility. During my year back in Houston, I was able to focus on doing something that I had never done before – staying. I embraced a new adventure. And boy, did I learn from it.
Thus far, staying has been the hardest thing I have ever attempted. Settling, building relationships, focusing on the people around me and the place under my feet. I can’t even count how many times I have preached to others, and myself, about the importance of finding a place that is yours and allowing yourself to become entangled, but never could I ever take my own advice. For me to be able to remain in my hometown, where I felt trapped, took a change of perspective. I had to learn how to enjoy the common, how to find adventure in my everyday life.
Well I’m glad I was able to finally do that.
I found a home. I found true friendships. I found a greater sense of self and direction.
I worked my ass off, made mistakes, took chances, tried new things, ate way too many oysters, laughed and cried and laughed some more, and eventually, became entangled with the place I was at.
During that year, I fell in love, got my heartbroken, and walked away stronger than I have ever been.
During that year, I mended relationships with my family that I had once thought were beyond healing. (And by this, I obviously mean I embraced my Swor-ness and finally gave in to the pole dancing-whiskey drinking-high class white trash way of life.)
During that year, I formed friendships that I will cherish forever, and lost some friends that I thought were life-long.
During that year, I wrote a novel and my heart fell in love with the catharsis that came with that literary therapy.
And, during that year, I grew restless and longed for a change. But, for once in my life, I realized that that was okay.
Times before, when I would get the urge to pack up and embrace on a new adventure, I would oscillate between feeling ashamed of my wandering spirit, and thinking it was the best thing ever and anyone that thought I was a heartless person could go suck on a bag of dicks (embracement of the Swor). The call of the new pulled me forward, but I always felt like a shitty person for being able to walk away so easily from the relationships I had formed.
The lightness that came with the epiphany that I could be both a galavanting gypsy and a fucking ray of sunshine was astonishing.
If anything, being able to simultaneously be invested in multiple places, people, and homes, shows how brave both my mind, and my heart, have become.
Even though I have a tendency to move towards the unknown, my heart remains in each and every place I have been. I have friends up North, and friends way down south, that continue to be the roots that keep me entangled with each of these homes that I have had.
Currently, I am busy carving out a place to leave my heart in my new home, Austin, as I move forward towards a PsyD (Doctor of Psychology) in Correctional Psychology (Prison Psychology).
I’ll be honest. Initially, my intentions for moving to Austin were less than pure. I’m not going to say I let history repeat itself but….yet again I found myself packing up my life and moving to a new place, unknown, anonymous, all in the name of “education.”
The good news is, “education” is an asshole and now I can be selfish and do this for me. I can get a freaking PsyD FOR ME. I can enjoy a new place FOR ME. I can make a new home FOR ME.
Making Austin mine hasn’t been easy, and I still don’t feel like it is mine quite yet. But that mine-ness is coming along. Slowly but surely.
The year after Mexico was focused on staying, and learning how to be happy and content in the present place, instead of constantly yearning for wherever’s next.
In fact, I wanted to learn that lesson so much I got it tattooed on my body.
At the beginning of this year, I got a new tattoo for a new lesson. Two daisies. One open, one closed. Representative of the fact that we all have ups and we all have downs.
This year, I get to focus on me. On making myself better. On learning to love my highs and my lows. On embracing every little bit of the fucking ray of sunshine that I am (albeit a slightly crazy ray of sunshine).
So here’s to self-reflection and hopefully keeping up with this strange thing called writing.