Posted by: heartsleeve | November 1, 2007

Another old post re-posted…

I woke up this morning feeling really, really stupidly happy. I think I dreamed about something good last night. I honestly don’t remember, but I’m guessing I had to if I woke up with this big stupid grin on my face. Or maybe I’m just becoming a happier person in general. I don’t know.

I would be lying if I said I didn’t worry. A lot. Experience tells me that this isn’t going to work. A lot of things aren’t in my favor in this situation. I’m hoping maybe because I understand exactly how much is working against me that if it does all fall apart, I don’t get as heartbroken over it as I have before. But at the same time…this feels different than before. Before, I always felt really alone and like everything was sort of one-sided. This time, though, I feel like…I feel like if I reached out to something, it would reach back. It is reaching back. That makes me hopeful, even if I probably shouldn’t be.

Everything in life right now is so full of potential, I don’t really know what to do with all of it. I spent the last year not having anything to look forward to, and now I’ve got everything right in front of me. I’ve just got to figure out how to hold onto all of it, and not let go of the weird happiness that’s got me smiling in my sleep.

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Posted by: heartsleeve | November 1, 2007

I am waiting for familiar resolve…

Something from this summer that I dug up and decided to publish. It pretty accurately explains a lot about me. Or, at least up until recently.


I don’t really think of myself as a pessimist. And I’m going to disclaim this because it’s been a long time since I’ve evaluated this quality in myself, so I have no idea whether this holds true or not, and because it’s been so long since I’ve had much contact with other people, I have no idea how people perceive me on this point either. I will just say that in general, I tend to be pretty confident about myself and my abilities, pretty optimistic about what the future holds, and generally speaking, I try to find the good in life — or at the very least, try to find the humor in the bad. (I find a lot of humor in the bad, actually.) And…I don’t know if any of that translates well to my blogs at all, because my blogs tend to be the one area where I really take the time to mull over all the bad stuff. And I really don’t know how other people see me, and I have this really strange feeling that I’m going to be seen like one of those Jane Austen characters who are always claiming to be one thing, while all their behavior betrays them for being exactly the opposite. =P All the same, I try to think happy thoughts and am pretty satisfied with my life. Especially right now. There is only one way my life could be better right now, and…I don’t know. I’m so happy about the entire rest of the situation, that I’m completely okay with that one small setback. It’s not permanent, and I just feel…lucky to be in the situation at all. See? Optimist. πŸ™‚

But here’s the thing. When it comes to the really big things in life, to the things that I really want for myself (and I’m talking about the over all big picture stuff here), I’m relatively certain I won’t ever get them. I have no idea why I think like that, really, but I always have. The big things on this list include falling in love and having a family of my own. They are the things I want so much, for the most part, I don’t even allow myself to think seriously about them. I think it’s just better to think I’ll never have them, so that way I’m not disappointed when they don’t happen. Which…I don’t know. I hate to be so negative about anything, but I think it’s my way of dealing with things sometimes. I can’t be disappointed if I never thought I’d have it anyhow, and not worrying about the impossible stuff allows me to focus on other things that I can have — like traveling the world.

I don’t know why I feel so certain about this stuff. Sometimes I think it’s a lifetime of my mother telling me she doesn’t know who will ever put up with me, or constantly reminding me that my track record with guys isn’t very good, or that the chances of anyone being happy are slim to none, and they become exponentially less when it comes to someone like me (which is sort of a compliment, but). When your own mother doesn’t believe you will someday find someone who will love you, I don’t know how you can ever expect it of yourself. 😦 Sometimes I think it’s just because I’m slow to trust other people, and anything that depends on other people, I rarely ever rely on. (And I trust people in the sense that I believe that they are being sincere whenever they say something, but I don’t depend on follow through. I also don’t hold it against people when they don’t follow through. *shrugs*) Other times, I think it’s just simply: I don’t think really good things ever happen to me. Almost everything I’ve had or gotten in the course of my lifetime has been through sheer force of will. The one thing I’m very thankful for is a lot of intelligence and natural ability, because I know that when it comes to luck, I don’t have much of it. There’s actually a running gag in my family about having “Fields luck”…and I’ve definitely got it. I’m used to having to fight for everything, and when it comes to some things, no amount of fighting can make a difference. I know, because I’ve tried. I think a lot of times the whole fighting part is counter-productive. So I don’t fight it at all anymore. I’m just resigned to the fact that some things will never happen. And I will probably never have the life that I’ve always kind of wanted.

I guess this kind of thinking goes beyond being pessimistic. It’s completely fatalistic. On the up side, though, it allows me to focus on other things which really are very important to me, and I really don’t worry about it too much like I know some girls do. (I have had girlfriends in the past who’ve pinned everything on getting married, and I don’t think that’s a very good use of anyone’s time or energy. In some cases, I don’t think they got the happiness they were looking for, either, which is pretty sad.) I try to make my life meaningful in spite of all the things I don’t think I’ll ever have. I know that with or without love, I myself am an amazing person, capable of amazing things. Life still holds all kinds of crazy possibilities for me, and…I don’t know. When people talk to me, though, about being in any of those situations that I don’t think I’ll find myself in, I always get this really odd, sad feeling. Like, please don’t hold this out in front of me. It’s not fair at all. I know it will never happen.

I don’t know. The whole thing is a kind of touchy awkward subject for me.

Posted by: heartsleeve | October 23, 2007

Home

Largeman: You know that point in your life when you realize that the house that you grew up in isn’t really your home anymore? All of the sudden even though you have some place where you can put your stuff that idea of home is gone.
Sam: I still feel at home in my house.
Largeman: You’ll see when you move out it just sort of happens one day one day and it’s just gone. And you can never get it back. It’s like you get homesick for a place that doesn’t exist. I mean it’s like this rite of passage, you know. You won’t have this feeling again until you create a new idea of home for yourself, you know, for your kids, for the family you start, it’s like a cycle or something. I miss the idea of it. Maybe that’s all family really is. A group of people who miss the same imaginary place.

I have really complicated feelings toward the word home right now. Too many places to call home. In three, I have physical shelter to call my own. In three, I have people that I love who make it feel like home. In two, I have a bed all my own. In one, a bed I share. In one, a job that is changing my life, and a million opportunities to try new things and meet new people. In another, something even bigger that is changing my life.

It’s confusing and cool and sort of depressing all at once. It feels a little schizophrenic at times, but at the same time, it’s good to know there are so many places in the world where I belong. Sometimes I really want someplace permanent that I can really call my own, but I’m actively resisting the act of settling. Is it weird to want to be a million places at once and to feel as if in some strange way you are actually almost achieving it?

Posted by: heartsleeve | September 29, 2007

Waiting

When I awoke today, suddenly nothing happened
But in my dreams, I slew the dragon
And down this beaten path, and up this cobbled lane
I’m walking in my old footsteps, once again
And you say, just be here now
Forget about the past, your mask is wearing thin
Let me throw one more dice
I know that I can win
I’m waiting for my real life to begin

Any minute now, my ship is coming in
I’ll keep checking the horizon
And I’ll check my machine, there’s sure to be that call
It’s gonna happen soon, soon, soon
It’s just that times are lean

And you say, be still my love
Open up your heart, let the light shine in
Don’t you understand
I already have a plan
I’m waiting for my real life to begin

Posted by: heartsleeve | September 17, 2007

Progress

β€œNothing is, everything is becoming.”
– Heraclitus of Ephesus

Posted by: heartsleeve | September 1, 2007

Destinations

Yesterday I went and spent some time with my grandmother. She began talking about her children and how little they turned out as she hoped they would. The eldest daughter, particularly, she’d had high hopes for. Like my grandmother, she was very smart and more on the serious side, made good grades, and was salutatorian of her high school class. My grandmother had really hoped she would go to college and make something of herself. (I think this was always the thing my grandmother had hoped she could do for herself — unfortunately her father wouldn’t let her.) Instead, though, my aunt got a summer job working out at the army depot after high school and ended up taking a perment job there, where she met and married a man who was much older than she was, divorced, and had five children. It was very disappointing. But then, it had been that way with so many of her plans. She said to me, “You don’t know where you’re going when you start, Katie.” But then after a second, she cracked a grin and said, “But wouldn’t life be boring if you did?”

I’ve been thinking about that a lot. To be honest, the uncertainty of everything is a little scary sometimes. It might seem a little weird, because I’m usually into adventures, and I’m not really into making long-term plans. (I can look ahead for about two years. Beyond that, it all gets fuzzy, and I think it’s kind of pointless to make any serious plans so far in advance.) But at the same time, I’d like to know somewhere out there, there’s some soft place to land. I’d like to know that at the end, wherever it is, my destination is a happy one. I guess happy is something you have to do for yourself though.

Hmm…

I don’t know. I haven’t been able to stop thinking about what she said. In my head, I see myself blindfolded and being spun around several times, like at the beginning of a game of pin the tail on the donkey. And then someone gives me a push, and I’m stumbling off on my own, nobody to hold my hand to keep me from falling, nobody to call out to me and let me know which direction’s the right one. It’s a very lonely feeling.

(But at least I know my life won’t be boring. I take too many risks, I think, for it ever to become that.)

Posted by: heartsleeve | August 28, 2007

A few thoughts on today…

Today I started packing all my things. I tried on pretty much every piece of clothing I bought for training and made sure everything looks good together and will be appropriate for the job. My room is pretty much a disaster area right now, and it is incredibly intimidating to think about getting everything ready for the next several months in just the next few days. It’s a lot to go through, but I can do it. I probably won’t finish the last two Harry Potter books, especially now that my mom has put the ban on all reading after my parents get off work. But.

I’m getting really excited about moving. Tonight I talked on the phone with my FA friend Diane who has been going through the whole hiring process with my airline over the last couple of months with me. She’s from Austin, and we interviewed at about the same time. We both fly away from Texas on Monday, and even though she’ll be in a different training class and won’t be living in my complex, we’ll be going through it together and we’ll probably still get to see each other a lot. My first friend in Minneapolis! It was really cool to have someone to talk to about it who is going through the same thing, and she’s one of the very few people who hasn’t been critical of my decision to go through with it.

Right now, support is a huge issue for me. Things have been kind of difficult on the home front, and that’s the one area I usually count on having someone to back me up and encourage me. It’s not so much that I worry about not being able to do it without support — I know I can. It’s more that I hate feeling like I’m disappointing anyone, especially family. I know at some point, though, I’m going to have to break away from my family and have my own life. My mom has always put a lot of pressure on me to stay in Texas, to not travel, and to more or less stay on a safe, well-worn track. I know what she wants is for me to stay in Texas, get a “normal” job, and get married ASAP. None of these things are on my list of things I want to do, though, and they never have been (at least not until I’m a little closer to the 30-ish side of my 20s!) She takes it as a personal affront that I don’t want to do them — some sign that I’m angry with her or think she’s done something wrong as a mother — but it’s not. It’s just not what I want for myself.

I have always been the kid who liked to go off on my own and do my own thing. When I was 7, my parents sent me off to girl scout camp for a week, and a week later when they came to pick me up, I didn’t want to leave. I liked seeing some place new, being on my own, exploring new things, meeting new people. Pretty much every summer after, I went to camps and tried to cram in as much as humanly possible. That’s the kind of person I am, at my very core. I love to see and do new things — and she encouraged all of those things the entire time I was growing up. I don’t know. I know she’ll come around eventually and get used to it, but it’s hard right now, because it is scary moving to a new place where you don’t know anyone and not having her there to tell me I’ll be fine. And…that’s pretty much every situation right now. They’re all kind of scary and new and also full of potential to be amazing, and it would be really nice to have some word of encouragement from her or for her to believe that things will turn out well, too. My mom is my backbone, and without her support, it’s really tough. Plus, I absolutely hate feeling like I’m making her sad. 😦

On the up side, I am getting a lot of support from one really unexpected quarter, and I feel really lucky to have that right now. It came at just the right moment, too, when I most needed a friend, someone to lean on and remind me that there’s a lot to look forward to. Moreover, it’s coming from someone who has always meant a lot to me, but that for a long time, I didn’t know if they’d ever be part of my life at all. So…it’s been really nice to have them around. The support couldn’t be more needed or more appreciated. I seriously don’t know if I could be doing this right now without it.

So yeah. That’s how things stand right now. Everything’s a little scary, but super exciting, and I have no idea how I’m going to get everything ready in five days!

Posted by: heartsleeve | August 18, 2007

Old Life

So in the midst of cleaning out and throwing away at my parents’ house, I found several of my old journals. One of them I kept for about six months, intending to send it to my friend Laura in Canada. I don’t know why I stopped writing or why I never sent it. Reading over it now, it’s pretty silly for the most part, and maybe I realized that. At the same time, some of it is pretty interesting.

Anyhow, I’m throwing it in the trash (I can’t justify keeping it when I already have way too much crap in storage here), but I thought I’d copy down what I think was probably the best entry in the whole thing. It gives you a little insight into how I felt at 15…and actually probably for most of my life.

 

Feb. 2000

I went outside tonight and stood for about 30 minutes. The weather was wonderful and breezy. Everything smelled smoky. You could hear the crickets and cicadas. It was so lovely. The moon was bright and the stars were out.

It’s hard to come inside. I like to stand in my backyard whistling at the wind. I like to imagine that I’m living on a planet far away. So far away that the tiniest star in the sky is the sun of my solar system. Maybe I would belong better there. Tonight was one of those rare nights where I feel that I belong.

I wonder a lot if I’ll ever love anyone. I’m pretty sure I’ll never be married. When I was little, I used to wonder how some people became so bitter and unhappy that they forgot how to love. I wanted a husband and 2 or 3 kids. I wanted a happy suburban life.

Now I just want to fade out.

I want to catch a spaceship and leave this little corner of the universe. I want to be happy. I want to love. I want to feel like I belong.

I want to go home, and I have no idea where that is.

 

Hmm… There are lots of things I’m thinking, but nothing very specific. I’m glad I don’t feel so alone anymore. I’m glad I found a place to belong. *shrugs*

Posted by: heartsleeve | August 6, 2007

“It’s easier for me now to let go of people.”

I spent all day yesterday with Shivangi in San Antonio. One of my favorite things about Shivangi is that I always know when I need to have a good talk, a serious talk, she will be the one that will have the best insight and advice. We talked about leaving Austin, and she said that for her, leaving Austin has been a good thing. It’s allowed her to grow up, to figure things out. She doesn’t feel so confused anymore about everything. She has become, in a lot of ways, someone else entirely.

She said she was glad I was leaving Austin, too, because it would be better for me, that I need to leave in order to grow. I’ve talked a lot to Shivangi about my fears of what would happen to me if I didn’t leave. I don’t want to go into them, but I’m very afraid of leading a life without meaning. I see too much potential in life, too many opportunities for unimaginable happiness, the infinite possibilities for change and growth and learning and experience, to settle for a life that is always the same, always confined to what is comfortable and already known. In some ways I guess it’s sad, because a part of this constant pursuit of something else is the leaving behind of people, places, and things that were important.

Shivangi said to me though, “It’s easier for me now to let go of people.” She said it’s easier now to recognize when a particular person or set of people no longer contribute to her growth, no longer bring something valuable to her life, and she does not feel that she always has to be sad about that, that she does not have to struggle to hold onto them. As terrible as it may sound simply to let go of people, it’s something I understand, something I think I started to do a long time ago, in subconscious preparation for what was coming next. That’s not to say that I’m letting go of everyone, that I’m going to sever relationships with people who have meant a lot to me and who I know will continue to mean a lot to me, but that it isn’t as hard to leave them now as I thought it would be. Anyone who is truly important will continue to care about me, be involved somehow in my life, regardless of how far away I am, and I them. At the same time, it is easier to recognize when some relationships have run their course, when some things won’t survive past their current context. You can’t let your sadness, when something ceases to have the meaning it once did, paralyze you. You have to keep moving.



One Art

The art of losing isn’t hard to master;
so many things seem filled with the intent
to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

Lose something every day. Accept the fluster
of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
The art of losing isn’t hard to master.

Then practice losing farther, losing faster:
places, and names, and where it was you meant
to travel. None of these will bring disaster.

I lost my mother’s watch. And look! my last, or
next-to-last, of three loved houses went.
The art of losing isn’t hard to master.

I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster,
some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent.
I miss them, but it wasn’t a disaster.

—Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
I love) I shan’t have lied. It’s evident
the art of losing’s not too hard to master
though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.

— Elizabeth Bishop

Posted by: heartsleeve | July 30, 2007

23

So far, only my 21st birthday rivals how well this one is going. That stands to date as my absolute most favorite birthday, largely due to the fact that it was my first Austin birthday and because it was the first time I ever realized how many people outside my family cared about me. I think this birthday definitely got off to the best start, though, and hopefully this will be the much better year. I am so excited and happy and grateful to whatever gods there might be for the opportunity to do so many of the things I always wanted to do, but never thought I could. I feel very lucky. πŸ™‚

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