After a week in Pleasant View I feel better than I have in a long time–relaxed, more like myself, ready for What’s Next. I decided not to go back to school, because it doesn’t make me happy. I hate school. How do I always forget that? It’s not that it’s difficult–I can pull straight A’s out of thin air, it seems–but I hate having demands on my time like that. (Work is okay, though, because it pays).
Also decided to move out (of here), because living there doesn’t make me happy, either. I need time and space to myself. Lots.
I spent the week going through all of my old photos and memorabilia and throwing out anything I don’t need–photos from the last day of fifth grade, movie stubs from middle school, etc.–a project inspired in part by this family (more on that to come…). I’m constantly trying to re-evaluate what it is that I truly need and continually paring down. This time, however, with the pictures and the memories, the results were…cathartic. Without even meaning to, I let go of the past, and all of the shit I’d been holding on to and identifying with just drifted off. It’s nice to have the memories, but I don’t need the reminders. I don’t have to be who I was. I don’t have to repeat the same patterns over and over.
I can embark on my life, from this moment forward, with everything I need inside of me–memories, thoughts, ideas, intentions, emotions–and I can confront each new situation and ask myself if this is what I really want, or if I’m just numbly going through the steps down a path that I no longer want for myself.
I feel so free. And I celebrated with the two men who love me for who I am, no matter what I choose. By eating chicken wings.
from The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner
Karma Ura (Bhutan): “I have no such mountain to scale; basically, I find that living itself is a struggle, and if I’m satisfied, if I have done just that, lived well, in the evening I sigh and say, ‘It was okay.’ ”
“Travel, at its best, transforms us in ways that aren’t always apparent until we’re back home.”
“Floyd was a large man, in the horizontal sense…”
“It’s a rotary phone. I can’t remember the last time I used one. It feels so heavy and slow, like dialing upwind.”
Tim LeBon (Britain): “Part of positive psychology is about being positive, but sometimes laughter and clowns are not appropriate. Some people don’t want to be happy, and that’s okay. They want meaningful lives, and those are not always the same as happy lives.”
“Where did this come from? I can’t identify one moment nor any particular position I twisted my body into. It just snuck up on me. Maybe this is how enlightenment happens. Not with a thunderclap or a bolt of lightning but as a steady drip, drip, drip until one day you realize your bucket is full.”
Monday, January 3rd, 2011
(Dad’s House – Pleasant View, UT)
“Lately, my first thought upon waking is that I do NOT want to be awake. Or alive. I’m flooded with anxiety, regret, and disappointment at having returned to consciousness.
Doesn’t bode well, does it? This, of course, is why I’ve chosen to seclude myself in Pleasant View, my own little suburban Walden. Bright, expansive wintry days to read, write, run, play viola, bake, and see if I can put myself back together–assemble the rough pieces into some sort of coherent whole. Stop hating myself. Stop hurting myself.
That’s the plan, at least.”
Dreamed early this morning that I tried talking to bring up what we were going to do about _____ at band practice, and I made my points, just like I’ve rehearsed, but to no avail. I got angrier and angrier, until I blew–quit the band and ran, just like that (real) day walking home with Kevin, the feeling of my legs growing more and more tired, heavy, but not wanting to stop.
In the dream, I was running past the palace and cathedral on the west side of Madrid, people everywhere, a sunny winter’s day. My friends chased after me, and when I fell to the ground, my face on the grass, exhausted, Chi brought his head down near mine and whispered kind words, kissing me gently.
I woke up confused.