Wow! Only four days until I head to Austin, Texas. I hesitate to say that I’ll be starting a new life, because I don’t anticipate doing a whole lot differently. I still intend to write every day, update this blog as much as possible (read: sporadically), and remain connected to my family and friends through social media (or picking up the phone, you know, that thing you use to post Instagram photos?).
Really, is there a limit to the ways we can stay in touch in the digital age?
In spite of the things that will remain the same and in spite of the excitement, I can’t help but feel a sense of loss, an overwhelming weight about me that sometimes makes it nearly impossible to so much as get up and walk, let alone want to drive halfway across the country. I’ve put on a pretty tough front over the last little while, following the decision, even going as far as to tell my mother that I’m fine, I hardly feel anything.
Yesterday I saw an old friend for what may be one of the last times and forced me to really face this. After all, he and I had known each other nearly ten years. We’ve played and recorded music together. We share a deep love for the horror genre. He was at my wedding and was around for many of my other romantic relationships. We survived through the suicide of a mutual friend. He’s one of those people that I can just bullshit with and not have to worry about going out and doing things to pass the time. Yesterday we talked about old times. He put it out there that he’d miss me and I did the same. Honesty like that is important, I think, even though I find it hard to be that honest with people all of the time. While it’d be all too easy to blame my dishonesty on the fact that society and people in general frown down upon displays of emotion, it comes from my own fears more than anything and it’s gotten harder the older I get. Maybe I’ll learn a lesson from this. Maybe I won’t.
I hope I do.
I guess what I’m saying here, if I’m saying anything, is that it felt good being able to confront some of the scarier aspects of relocating. On Tuesday, I’ll embark on an adventure. I’ll have the woman I love beside me and we won’t be totally alone down there. But damn, it’s scary, because it is a new life, isn’t it? And it’s okay to be afraid. It’s better than okay, because it’s the stuff we do when we’re afraid that really helps us grow, isn’t it? Like your lead character’s growth over the course of your manuscript. Like taking that job even your afraid you may not be good at it. Like asking out that attractive person making eyes at you across the room. Like going out and speaking about a cause you believe in. Like your first night sleeping with all the lights out.
I hate when people say, “don’t be afraid.” It’s always felt false to me. I say, “be afraid, be very afraid, but don’t let that stop you.”
All the beast,