"I was, in fact, homesick for wildness, and when I found it I knew how intimately - how resonantly - I belonged there. We are charged with this - all of us. For the human spirit has a primal allegiance to wildness, to really live, to snatch the fruit and suck it, to spill the juice." - Jay Griffiths, Wild: an Elemental Journey

Monday, May 28, 2012

"Solo or Duo?" or "How Nothing Ever Works Out the Way I Think it Will"

Disclaimer: This is one of those still-figuring-things-out posts where I process through writing.  If you're one of my readers who likes the more neatly-packaged, I've-reached-an-epiphany-and-will-now-inspire-you-with-it posts, skip this one.

(My personal opinion is that getting a window right smack into the middle of someone else's process, before it has been polished, is a much greater lesson.  Hence why I lay myself bare so often in these posts.  It's for you, dear readers.  I bleed for you.)

Ok enough silliness. Still there?  Good.  Let's get started.

A happy picture of me to counteract the slight confusion and sadness of the rest of this post.

As you read in my last post, I'm having a bit of trouble deciding what exactly to do with myself when I leave Maryland in two weeks.  And I think a lot of it has to do with feeling torn about whether to move forward alone or with Oldman.  Sigh.  This is why I didn't want to fall in love before leaving.  Love complicates everything.  (And by complicates everything, I mean makes everything wonderful.  And maddeningly difficult.  And wonderful.)

A brief timeline, if you will:

  1. July/August, 2011: I go on a road trip out west, mostly by myself.  I decide on this trip that I want to live out there permanently, and that this will be my last school year in Maryland.
  2. September, 2011: I return from my trip, begin telling everyone that I am leaving, and begin making plans to do so at the end of this school year.  Alone.
  3. October, 2011: I say to the universe, "Universe, this is not the time for a man.  I want to be single for awhile.  No falling in love.  Do you hear me?  Universe!"  The universe must have been taking a nap.  Sigh.  She's so lazy sometimes.
  4. November, 2011: I meet Oldman at my climbing gym.  We climb together and hang out a bit, but I think it's safe because he's supposed to be leaving this month to move west himself.  No chance of falling in love here.  Plus, he's Asian, and I've never dated an Asian dude.
  5. December, 2011: I fall in love with Oldman.  He stays on the east coast to be with me, and asks me to move in with him.  Oops.
  6. January-April, 2012:  I live with Oldman.  We have lots of great times, and a few to-be-expected not-so-great times.  We begin planning our joint venture west.  Slowly I allow my solo plans to slip through my fingers, thinking, This will be better with someone else.  This will be a new kind of adventure for me.  I finally met someone who wants the same kind of life as me.  This is worth compromising on some of my original ideas.  We'll build something beautiful together.
  7. May, 2012:  Oldman decides that he doesn't want the same kind of things that I want, or that he doesn't want to be in a relationship, or that he doesn't want to be in a relationship with me - I'm not really sure which.  He quits his job and moves to Louisiana with his parents.  He leaves me here in his apartment, alone, for the rest of my time in Maryland.  It feels like it's over.
  8. Except that we still talk.  Every day.  And I still love him.

So now something that seemed exhilarating and completely feasible a year ago (moving west by myself) all of a sudden seems daunting and scary.  I had allowed myself to get excited about Oldman and I traveling around, living out of his truck, climbing, rappelling, backpacking, meeting people, and figuring out together where to settle for a bit.  Now that's no longer an option, and I'm sort of stuck on obsessing about that, and I can't move forward alone.

I'm good at traveling alone.  It's how I've always done it.  I know I can do it again.  But I don't know if I want to.  At some point, it'd be cool to like, be in a relationship that lasts, or something crazy like that.

The practicalities are that Oldman is in Louisiana, and plans to stay there for an undetermined amount of time, living rent free, and saving up some money for his own venture west.  I don't want to live in Louisiana for any amount of time, even if it's to see him.  I'm financially and circumstantially ready to go NOW, and I don't want to wait any longer.  Plus Louisiana's all flat and hot and muggy and buggy and flat.  (Yes I know I said "flat" twice.  It's an important point.)

So I will probably go by myself.  Where?  I don't know yet.  Probably Montana to start, because I left a huge chunk of my heart there last summer, and it's been calling to me ever since.  But that's only until I hear about the fellowship I applied for in Nepal. . .

And that's for another post.

Happy Memorial Day, everyone.  Now I'm off to leave this over-thinking behind and go to a pool party/BBQ/wedding reception with the fam in PA.  Just what I need. :)

P.S. How come I have hundreds of blog page views a week, and dozens of people telling me how much they enjoy my blog via Facebook, email, and in person, but only 13 followers?  How am I supposed to become a famous writer and convince places to hire me to freelance with only 13 followers?  What gives, y'all?  Join my blog!  (Pretty please?)

P.P.S.  You do that by clicking the little blue button on the right that says "Join This Site."  All it means is that you'll be listed as a follower, and my new posts will appear on your blogger page, if you even have one or know what I mean by that.  If not, then don't worry about it - just follow me!  K, thanks.


  1. You need a feedburner account, my friend. ;)

  2. Whoa. I've never heard of that. I think I need a lot in terms of becoming a "real" author/blogger - like more than just my friends and family read. (Not that I don't appreciate that!) I see that you've become quite a successful author- congratulations!!

    Tell me all your blogging secrets. . . pretty please. :)

  3. Ok I think I just got a feed burner account, but I don't understand what that means. They used a lot of big web lingo words. I feel so old-fashioned. . .