Tuesday, June 2, 2009

here there be dragons


I recently had a lovely and very rewarding experience with blogging, during an extended stay in Paris (it was long enough to be a sort-of staycation, only not at home, so I feel very on-trend). Since I've been back in the States, I've found that I've missed blogging - missed the writing, the photos, the coming-up-with-ideas, the responses and comments. So I'm re-entering the arena, with a less focused, more open-ended structure this time around.

One year ago, I sold my apartment and quit my job (both in NYC), after realizing that I was miserable and stuck. Since then, I've been alternately doing exciting, adventurous things (the trip to Paris, two months in Mexico learning Spanish), and doing not much of anything (a bit of freelancing, a lot of lunches with friends, a lot of reading).

I tell people that I'm soul-searching and struggling to figure out what's next. I tell myself, on a good day, that I'm bravely facing the big questions, refusing to just coast along, refusing to be satisfied with a certain level of happiness, a certain level of accomplishment, a certain level of self-awareness. That I'm clearing my own path, disregarding the influence of what my friends and family have chosen for themselves, and would choose for me. That I'm able to disappoint others to find out what is right for me, and go for it.

On a bad day, I wonder if I'm just lazy and unambitious.

While it's great to be home in the middle of the day to watch as much French Open as I like, I am also aware that this is not a tenable existence, that at some point, I will have to come up with a better plan, whether the impetus is boredom, dire financial situation, or sheer existential panic.

One subject that I've been mulling, as many of us do at this point in our lives, is how I ended up where I am. When I look back on my adult life, it feels as if I just let things unfold, rather than making choices and plans. This has had a definite upside (I doubt I would have lived in L.A. [which I now love] for almost a decade if I'd made a five-year plan after college), but it of course has had a lot of downside as well, especially in the career zone.


So now, after a year of mulling and soul-searching and all that jazz, I feel it's time to take charge of my future, more or less. (How's that for a ringing, bold rally cry?) Hence the blog: I used to write a lot, and not work stuff, but my own stuff. Over the years, however, I lost this habit and, with it, the one way I've seen to get out of nine-to-five and lead a richer, more rewarding life.

This blog, hopefully, will not only document this in-between time in my life, but will help me move on to whatever is next.

15 comments:

  1. Yay you're still blogging! As for your past year, you obviously could afford to take the time out and do the stuff you did...and you'll always look back on that as something you're glad you did at the time.

    I look forward to reading about your journey.

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  2. As a doctor up to my eyballs in health care mess, it has been a pleasure to read your adventures in Paris; I almost feel like I was there.
    Perhaps writing these blogs will help you find what you loved to do originally, and please take us along for the ride.
    Cheers, Jenny

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  3. Brilliant! The journey continues, and we get to read along. Your earlier comment about that "40-hours-a-week life that pretty much all of us figured we were going to avoid, and which pretty much all of us now have," struck a chord. Looking forward to the Further Adventures Of...!

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  4. Count me in too. A life lived vicariously is still a life, no?

    Good writing and good looks will get you far, or so I am told.

    Good luck.

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  5. Welcome to your new "home" away from home, Siobhan. So v happy you're back. And what a great title! I'm talking, The Next Apartment. If you're as happy here as you were over there.. Well, I'm with you all the way.

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  6. Thanks, everyone! I'm kind of excited about my blog; it feels like some sort of momentum, and I can use all the momentum I can get. Please continue to let me know what you think.

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  7. Brenda: Glad you like the name. I took it from "These Foolish Things": "A tinkling piano, in the next apartment / Those stumbling words, that told you what my heart meant / A fairground's painted swings / These foolish things, remind me of you."

    But basically, I just like the phrase.

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  8. I think watching the French Open in the middle of the day is a great existence! And cheers, to taking your time and figuring out what's best for you. I'm glad to see you're blogging again!

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