Going back to school: life changes 101

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Where to begin…for the first time in the better part of a year I am starting to feel like myself again. I have my own place, stable employment and I’m not an emotional train wreck. So where do I go from here? I have had several interesting conversations in the last month or so that have me re-thinking “The Plan.”

To begin with I should state that “The Plan” has already had several revisions and was crafted in a time of utter confusion and emotional instability- hence the need for revisions. I started with something along the lines of “get the hell out of dodge!” this early stage had notions of running as far to the other coast as my little Neon would take me. Thank God my best friend made me sleep on that one.

Then it moved on to “Survive, we must keep safe.”  So I focused on my job but in my semi crazy state any change made me even more neurotic and so I moved again. To a place with a little more space and a lot more issues. Finally, I reached “Remember how to breathe.” This actually being the most challenging phase of the transition to reclaiming my life. Without the distractions of pain and survival to take up my waking thoughts and am now faced with the wonderful question of “What do “I” want to do with my life?”

The obvious answer would be to double my salary and go back to teaching. But after five minuets of logical thought I know that is not the answer. Because the truth is that I loved my students more than I loved my subject or teaching itself.  And I know that I cannot go back to throwing myself  into a life that is empty or diminishing. So I am left to ponder what kind of life/do I want?

In my head I can see a new path for myself and at the same time I have a lot of nagging voices saying things like “You went to school for five years to throw it all away? You want to go to night/correspondence school? isn’t that just a rip off?” But deep in my heart I know that I cannot go back to teaching and I cannot stay where I am either. My life here is good but it is only a stepping stone to real health and stability in my life. And I realize that I could pack up and move across the US and probably be okay now but I would be doing something that I don’t love in the name of money and I am not that kind of person.

I’m not saying that I won’t work a job I don’t “love,” I’m saying that I will not dedicated more than a year of my life to it if there is not an end goal and I think that is what I have finally found. So I’m going back to school to be a Vet Assistant. Other than teenagers my other great life long passion a has been animals. In fact I almost went to college for zoo keeping.

I know if you have been reading my old blogs you’re thinking “wasn’t she writing a book?” and I was and have. But I also realize that I have to eat, and the writing will always be there waiting for me. I know the “real” writer’s are rolling their eyes and rightly so. I am not a real writer. I am a person who loves stories. Real writers write when there is no bread. Get up and do it every day and don’t wait for inspiration and that is not me. All I will say in my defense is that the birth of my would be novel is very much rooted in the death of my marriage and for now they are too closely bound.

There are many things that I am just awakening to. I took my first pictures in months of my bran new niece. It felt good to do something creative but I feel myself holding back. I know I am afraid to open the door. Anyone who works in a creative way knows that whether you mean it too or not your life ends up on the page, canvas or plate. It is the nature of creativity and there is a part of my the is still scared.

This is step one: imagine a different life. I was talking with a friend when I realized in some small way I already have done this. When I used to sit in my best-friends house crippled by a broken heart I would dream about the place I knew I would one day have. I saw an open room with lots of light a large window and I felt happy there. The other day I realized that I was already there. Sitting in my living room with the sliding glass door open to the balcony. Light streamed in on my two cats blissing out. I smiled looking at the tree just beyond and realized I was home. That place I had dreamed about finding was here.

Now I have to dream a bigger dream, one where I’m not just safe and stable: one where I am creative and passionate, one where I am brave and bold and not afraid to try again and again because I and worth it. My dreams are worth it and I still have lots and lots of time to be and do what-ever I decide. I’m about to be 32 and I am starting over- Yay me!!!

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One response »

  1. I think that, no matter what age, if you believe it’s possible, starting over and changing your life is not just possible, it’s beautiful. And I am so very glad that you’ve found a direction that you feel so good about.

    And thank you for pointing out “that whether you mean it too or not your life ends up on the page, canvas or plate.” I’ve felt guilty for not working on my novel these last months, but I just couldn’t bring myself to write what’s been in my heart lately.

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