feeling stuck, & a visitor from the past


Shit’s been weird lately. And by weird I mean mainly bad. I feel trapped, stuck, unsure of what I want or where I should go, stymied, full of existential dread, and extremely broke always.

Also, I’m tired.

I’m tired of Los Angeles, but we knew that. I’m tired of spending 2+ hours every day in the car. I’m tired of having $5 in the bank account the day before payday. I’m tired of not being around my closest girl friends. I’m tired of the weather (I miss real seasons!). I’m just exhausted.

I had a plan to get a job in Seattle, but that hasn’t panned out yet. And Seattle is just as stressful and expensive as Los Angeles, isn’t it.

So. I’m stuck, for the time being. I’m unhappy at work, unhappy in my city, lonely, feeling like a creative failure, and broke.

I don’t know what to do, y’know? I am a woman of action, yet here I am, with no idea how to move forward.

Usually I have a plan, I immediately put it into action, and then things change. When I wanted to live in London, I applied for a few master’s programs, go into one, and went. When I wanted to move to Los Angeles, I applied for some jobs, got one immediately, and went. But I don’t have a job yet, and I don’t have enough money to just go, and I cannot describe the depth of my frustration and misery right now!

Shit just sucks sometimes. It’s a combination of all of the above, plus losing a close friend recently (they’re still alive, just not close anymore), plus the emotional turmoil surrounding an on-again off-again crush, that’s plunged me into a chronic functional depression.

Then, of course, today, my most recent ex messaged me out the blue. Well, not out of the blue — I had sent him a message on Facebook back in August, and he finally saw it today, months later, because he “doesn’t do social media.” He gave me his phone number, which I had lost, so I texted him, and we started talking.

Honestly, I’m shocked he responded at all. He always hated texting and writing emails or letters; he was just bad at communicating in general. So I didn’t expect him to engage, or ask me about what I’d been up to, about work, about my family, my writing, my life. When we broke up in 2013, after almost 6 years of serious dating and more years of friendship before that, we broke off contact altogether. We’ve exchanged texts less than a handful of times since the breakup, and it’s always something like, “hey did I leave my DVD of Breakfast at Tiffany’s in SLC?” and a brief “nope” in response. Maybe the most genuine interaction between us since our breakup was the day I had to text and let him know our college friend and D&D buddy had passed away in a car accident.

Today, he was at the airport, and we talked until he boarded his plane. He said the years had flown by, and I said it felt like yesterday I was living in London. He said he still talks about his visit to London to see me, and I told him that week was one of the happiest times in my life. It’s true, and I’ve wanted to tell him that for years, but assumed I’d never have the chance.

We slept in the same bed for 5 years. Lived in three cities together. Adopted a dog. He knew me better in the time we were together than anybody else did. I was 100% certain we were going to get married. I grew into a new person with him, and eventually that new person became someone who couldn’t stay with him.

It felt so strange texting him as if he were an acquaintance, both of us knowing we used to be family.

Then his plane started boarding, and we agreed it was so nice to catch up, and said our goodbyes.

And that was that.

I’m not sad about it. I’m not upset, and I don’t exactly miss him. But I think about the people who enter our lives, and how they can just as easily leave our lives completely and totally. At the time, when the pain is deepest after a loss, it feels like we’ll never survive — there’s no getting past this. But the days pass, and the weeks and months and years go by, and you don’t hurt anymore, and suddenly you realize it’s been months since this person crossed your mind, and even when they do, it’s only for a moment. And that? That makes me sad.

I feel like I’ve traveled in time, or been offered a glimpse into my past, watching my younger self, in her mid-twenties, deeply in love with this man I don’t know anymore. I’ve changed so much since we were together, and I am sure he has too.

I don’t know. It was just… such a strange, unexpected interaction. And of course it reminded me how lonely I am, and how, for the first time since I broke up with this guy — I actually want to date again.

Maybe he was sent to me for that reason, today. Maybe it was the universe telling me, “Hey, it’s okay. Time passes. People change. Love comes and goes. Don’t cling to the bitterness and anger, you idiot. Even your shitty ex is a good person who you still care about. And you know what? Your heart is big enough to care about someone new.” Yeah yeah, Universe. I get it.

Anyway. This was the most rambling, absolutely nonsensical blog post. But I’m so out of sorts and off kilter and I needed to let it out somehow.

Christmas, and a visit home to Montana, honestly can’t come soon enough.

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