15 days left in 2009, and I am left wondering where it went. All I see is a blur (or maybe the frenzied haze that this blog is named for).
Last year I did my year end review (teacher…reflection, you’ve heard it before). Not today…maybe not ever.
I could say that I am exactly back to where I was last year – sitting at Starbucks, basically unemployed, not sure where to go, how to get there, grasping at miniscule straws, mourning decisions that became mistakes (those are life lessons, aren’t they?). I could say that I have NOW gone full circle…but you’ve heard that too…
A year ago I returned to leave. It was temporary – I recognized the necessity to change my life. I bought the plane ticket, packed my bags, and twelve hours before I was supposed to board that plane, I stopped myself. Maybe it was too soon – it had only been eight weeks since I had returned. Maybe I will never know, and will spend the rest of my time theorizing over it. The mystery that will always baffle me.
That moment was supposed to be temporary.
It has taken me a year to finally give up on my pursuit of England. In recent weeks I have finally let go of the connections that kept me bound to that experience. I closed my UK bank account – a little saddening, considering I needed permission to open that account. Finally, yesterday, I cashed in my plane ticket. That hurts a little more – it is finally my acceptance of failure, of my inability to control the situation. I should have gone back last January. Life is too short to have regrets, but I made the wrong decision, and I will regret it. One more for the “coulda, woulda, shoulda” file.
Cashing in that ticket also changes the balance of power. I had an escape – the final link between my old life (the travel, adventure, experience) and my present life (undecided, uninspired, unsure - anymore un-prefixes that I can find?). Now that scale is tipped, and I have my present life, and I’m not particularly sure I like that. I came home to leave, but instead of leaving, I am still here, stagnating in my mind.
The longer you sit here the more jaded you become. I hate being jaded – I would love to be eternally optimistic, and naïve; but I will settle for realistic. Why hasn’t the redo button been created for real-life?
What does it all mean? What are these increasingly depressing moments of reflection leading towards?
I know now – I used to leave it up to fate, and hoped that a magic wand would make it better. That’s not how it works though – change can only occur when we take the individual onus to create that change (yes Confucius, that is how it works). Along the way we are forced to take individual responsibility for our failures, and that is a righteous kick in the ass. You can try and leave it up to someone else to be the one to point out your failures to you, but that never truly works. By the way, do you know how many attempts it took me to spell “onus?” - who knew it was only a four letter word?!
So now what?
Maybe the last year was the obstacle I needed. From every experience something should be learned, and learn I have. I would love to be among the few who want to see this city take a positive direction, to help exact a change. The only problem with this city is its own negative self image. Desperation, bitterness and more jadedness. It is hard to be in a location that has given up on itself. And maybe one day I can be that force –but not today. Too much time spent in the shadows of negativity causes you to give up as well – I have too much of a mind to give up. I will leave, but not because I want to. Home will always be here, and one day I will return to it. Unless I fall in love with a warmer climate, and no longer to feel the need to subject myself to polar temperatures (let’s be realistic here, I do not love the cold).
I will always return to England – every time I hear “Warwick Avenue”, I find myself running through Victoria Station. It is my constant reminder that London isn’t that far.
I need to experience again – I find humour in experience, and this blog is lacking the humour it once had – mainly because I am lacking the humour…
And maybe this time I am ready to leap without looking. I have a plan, but not a formal one – formal plans never unfold as they should, and ultimately lead to disappointment. Today I am tired of disappointment. I have a path I plan on taking, and surely that is better than where I was at this time last year.