It's hard for that to not sound like this week last year. Especially since I'll end up in the same places this weekend: in a parking lot with a dance floor and a truckload of beer, in front of a stage watching friends walk across, inside apartments saying goodbye.
I don't know what I'm doing going forward; interviews have been unsuccessful, if I've even gotten them, and one thing I do feel is a bit of a failure -- that it's been this long, 365 days since what felt like the apocalypse (I mean, um, getting my diploma), and I don't have something perma-perma-permanent to show for it. I don't think I've ever known if I was doing this right or not. What is the "right" way to do this, to un-transition (except I don't know if there is such a thing), to transition-through (maybe more like this) (except at the same time the transition is still life in itself, it's not like you stop living during transition and then start, what are we pushing through or to?), to push and shake hands and type cover letters and fight the lack of experience cycle of frustration? How do I go about making my way? When do I decide that I need to change something? How does it become clear? What is the point of tipping? (These are questions that sound kind of word-flimsy but I promise you they are deeper and needling even wearing their invisibility cloak because I cannot see, I just feel.)
I guess there's not a right way. I feel messy about it, messy and shitty and yet messy and satisfied. I have talked to people and built a network and I present myself well and I feel very confident and good about the connections I have made this year. I have learned a new city and I love it, and I have no problem driving around and giving people directions and getting myself involved in various parts of this community. That is a fulfilling fact. I feel well-wedged, and proud, and content in doing all of that. I have grown in ways that I cannot explain (which may contribute to the whole not-writing-much issue). I have sobbed hard and smiled wide, through desperation and dearth and daisy-studded delight.
I am not the girl from this week last year.
But sometimes I am still afraid that I will suck myself into the despair; not the despair of nothingness, but the despair of everything. Of not knowing so much, and of having to step on and on into darkness with so many frayed threads and confusing moments that deserve better-thought-out answers than I am able to give. I am afraid to take a step and drop something. And all of these descriptions are so vague because it means that I am really afraid of what cannot be expressed.
There could probably be a million different versions of this particular blog post. I've waited on it because I keep wanting to have closure and understanding, firm brick and locks on doors and a paycheck. And I keep wanting to be able to say, "ta daaa! I did it! The era of transition is ended! Rejoice with me, cyberworld!"
I know it's out there, but not yet, not this moment, I guess.
Some moments I truly feel that I have a light and a joy and comfort that stems from moving forward and coming to know yourself differently and being happy with both the internal and the external. The heart and the city. And other moments I feel that this is bar none, absolutely the most difficult portion of my life that I can ever recall. It is hard to know what to do with that juxtaposition. Therefore, it is hard to write.
I will be there for my friends this weekend. I will hug them, cheer for them, take their picture. I will ache a little for a moment that I had a fifty-few Sundays ago that mirrored theirs, and I will know that I don't want to go back to that. It was hard enough getting past it. I will go and be surrounded by people that I love, and who love me. I will let it go, and not try so hard to control it all. I will listen more than talk. I will laugh loudly and mutter prayers. Knowing me, I'm sure I'll sing.
I will wait. I will wake up, and wake up, and wake up.
Hope means to keep living amid desperation and to keep humming in the darkness. Hoping is knowing that there is love, it is trust in tomorrow, it is falling asleep and waking again when the sun rises. In the midst of a gale at sea, it is to discover land. In the eyes of another, it is to see that he understands you...
-- Henri Nouwen