“What made you move to Austin?”
That’s everyone’s favorite question to me here. A question I loved at first, then loathed, then came to terms with. Even though I only lived five hours away previously, it is like I am completely foreign. That’s great a lot of the time, because I can introduce them to all that Louisiana has to offer. I mean, Louisiana is unlike anywhere else in the world. And now the anniversary of my move to Austin is coming up. Weird!
I used to answer that question by saying, “A series of unfortunate events led me here.” That sentence now bothers me, because it puts a negative connotation on my move, and it makes it sound like I had no where else to go. Of course that statement is far from the truth. I have many family members and friends who love me, who have offered their homes to me when I was first having issues in my marriage and my life. None of that sounded good to me. I didn’t want to live off of anyone, to start living by their rules when I was already used to my own boundaries. But I CHOSE to pack my things and move to the beautiful city of Austin. I ran from everything I knew. But after a serious conversation with a close friend of mine, I suppose the best way to answer that question now is to say, “My heart and soul led me here.” That sounds so cheesy and anticlimactic, but at this present time, that is the best answer I can come up with. The grass was never greener here until I started to take care of myself again. In order to take care of myself, I had to rediscover the wants and needs of this new person. I’m constantly learning new talents I never knew I had or had forgotten. For example, I forgot how good I was at drawing, and I haven’t drawn since I was very young. I’m no Picasso, but I had forgotten how much joy it brought me.
Don’t get me wrong. Just because everything seems great now, doesn’t mean that the issues I was going through didn’t follow me here. Oh yes…the problems were not only there but even more prevalent. Not only did I have to worry about the things I had to worry about before, I also had to worry about new issues. For example, where was I going to live? I am so grateful that I have a friend here that allowed me to stay with her until I found a new job and a new place. But the move was still stressful, I was alone, and completely independent for the first time in six years. I didn’t have furniture. I had to pay my soon to be ex-husband gas money to bring me my bed from Louisiana. And just to reiterate again, I am not the victim. There was a reason my heart led me here. I just don’t want to give the wrong impression that life was easy-peasy when I decided to leave.
The grass was never greener here until I started to take care of myself again.
“Well, V, why on earth did you stop taking care of yourself? What changed? Give me all of the details, and don’t hold anything back!”
I’m sure that many expect me to blame others for my midlife crisis at 25. I’m blunt, honest, and usually say off of the wall things when I’m feeling awkward or uncomfortable. Well, if you are here to witness backlash on my soon to be ex-husband, then you came to the wrong place. If I ever decide to write on the subject of my divorce, it will be written out of love and respect for the lesson’s I’ve learned during the years I spent with him. What I CAN say is that it has everything to do with losing myself, my values, and my perspective on everything good in life.
There will be a day when I am brave enough to write about all of the situations that have occurred in my life, but my heart is moving forward. The focus is to move forward. And I will write on those situations eventually. “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…” I swam so far that the water became clear, and I had the courage to finally come up for air and take a deep breath. I can come up with another euphemism for you, but I believe you get the point.
It is so strange to think about who I was then and who I am now. Who I was four years ago. I do not even recognize her at times when I see her in photos, or when people bring up memories of her. That person is gone…long gone. I did what most people do when they lose someone; I grieved. But now, I see a new person, a new light dancing behind my eyes when I look at myself, and that same light is being transmitted to the people I choose to surround myself with here. A new woman. A new awakening. The mission of my writing here is to connect and encourage people who may relate to what I have to say. I am not even close to being awakened fully. I think that is what life is all about. Choosing to keep your eyes open when all you want to do is close them because of fear. A fellow blogger once told me that hope is the ultimate gift you can give to readers. If I could offer any advice that will bring hope to you, is that you don’t have to stay in a toxic environment. You are NOT trapped. YOU are in full control of your life, even when it doesn’t feel like you do. Most of all, you are loved.
To my Readers:
You may not always agree with me. I may view a perspective that is different than your own now and in the future. In these writings, I will also learn lessons. As my writing evolves, so will I. What do I have to offer to you? My love and lessons that I have learned through out my life, and that is about all I can promise to you for now. And to all of my misfits, weirdos, and the eccentrics out there– you’re the best.