Sunday, October 18, 2009

Who are YOU?

[Picture from B's reception on Friday]

I should be packing since we're leaving LS tomorrow morning at 5. It's almost 11, Mr. C. is curled into a ball beside me and I haven't started sorting anything since our clothes are in the laundry... even though they've probably been done for at least an hour. I just don't want my time here to end.

This weekend was just what I needed. I had five or six of those "please, time, just freeze" moments with my lover, my best friend, and my family. The past month or so has been very rough, even though neither Mr. C. or I wanted it to be, and coming home to my familiar surroundings was just what I needed.

Last Monday, Mr. C. and I decided that I should quit my job. Actually, Mr. C. suggested while I was mid-breakdown about never having enough time to do anything. I balked at first- who is he to tell me to quit my job? How 1950s is that?- but after he suggested it and I calmed down, I knew he had the right idea, and I told him the next morning that I knew work was the only thing I could cut. And my full time student, working husband? He smiled (a little nervously) and agreed: We're cutting it.

I haven't told my boss yet, and I'm not looking forward to telling him. I have one of those really nice, laid back bosses that you can't help but love. He's really old and he's really smart and he's really funny and I'm going to ruin his day when I tell him I'm quitting, but I think he knows it's coming. How can he not? I barely come in anymore, and I haven't been in since I decided to quit, mainly because I had a lot of homework and my boss wasn't there for me to tell him of my eminent departure, plus I've been out of town.

I'm excited for the free time to work on school, photographs, and writing.
I feel like I'm breathing fresh air and for the first time since I fell in love with Mr. C., my cheeks have been sore all week from smiling. I am so relieved.

This weekend made me even happier.

Today, Mr. C. and I had a whispered conversation in the back of the Primary room, and as he flurried about child psychology and information that he loves, he asked me a question: Who are You?

[He knew the answer already, don't worry]

I thought about it for a moment, but I didn't know what to say. Instead of telling him, I asked him who he thought I was. He didn't fall into my plan. I rattled off a small list and smiled. This sufficed him, but I kept wondering. Who am I?

Want to know the answer?

I am different than I used to be. This weekend, as I looked across Brittney's reception, I thought of how far we've come. Brittney and I have been best friends for thirteen years, but our friendship has had some extremely rocky patches. Both of us could probably beat anyone in a "well, my best friend did this..." competition, in an array of directions. We lived together our first year of college and it was a disaster, so much that I thought our friendship was completely nullified. Luckily, it wasn't. I love her and I am so glad that she found someone who loves her completely, and I almost cried when I had to leave her at the end of the night. She's an amazing woman, she's grown so much, and she will always be one of the main factors in my life, just as she has always been. I can't believe that we are adults. No more tweety-bird swimsuits, girl sleepovers, or boy drama. No more Hanson, glitter eye-makeup or shared high school lockers. How did we grow up so fast?

Maybe it was the fact that I watched our childhood come completely to a close as I stood behind her Friday evening as she made her vows and her new husband wept. Maybe it was the fact that, for a few days, nothing mattered except family and friends and love. Maybe it's the fact that my free time is about to increase by twenty hours a week. Maybe it's the fact that I can taste freedom, happiness, and love all in one breath of air. Or maybe it's because I stopped to breathe that air in.

I've changed. I've been a million different people. I've been connected to thousands of people my entire life, and the network keeps growing. I've been horrible to some while I've been overly gracious to others. I've had days so hard that I wanted to close my eyes and fast forward five years. I've had years so hard that the memories still bring searing pain, despite the goodness that surrounded me then and now. I have a better lover than I could ever imagine. He's funny and creative and smart and more kind than I deserve. I've yelled at people I cared about, soaked my arms in paint, looked at the world through a lens, written stories until the early dawn, skipped nights of sleep, cried into telephones, lived in three states, found my independent streak, overreacted, and I have found my own way.

But where does that bring me? To myself. I keep evolving, and I will keep evolving. But through it all, I know that my husband, my family, and my best friends will always be there for me. I know it sounds cheesy, but I can't put it any other way. Life has not always been easy, and it won't always be easy in the future, but I want to be able to live a life where I can stop and take in my surroundings. Life moves too quickly for a set routine. Life moves too quickly to not be taken in. Each moment is the only moment that will ever happen, that will ever matter, and I plan to suck the life out of each of those moments. They're mine, and they're yours, too- I think we're entitled to them.

Does this make sense? It doesn't need to. It makes sense to me.