Greener Grass

I’ve never liked the expression “watch what you wish for”. I think it discourages dreaming, and pushes people to settle for what is, rather than encouraging them to make positive changes in their lives. It feeds that innate fear that anything we do will make matters worse.

Gathering vibes 1But there is a reason that we share this collective fear. Often we idolize what we want and once we do get it, the reality falls short of the the dream. It still may be an improvement over what we had, and it might even be a big improvement. It’s just not perfect. It doesn’t make us perfect. It doesn’t make everyone around us perfect. So another dream looms. A different job, a new lover, another town, or maybe better friends. The tough part is figuring out when it’s time to stop chasing perfection and embrace the life you are living.

Do this too easily, and you are settling for less than you should.  Never accept anything other than perfection, and you have chained yourself to a life of discontent. This living life well shit is so damn difficult, isn’t it?

Obviously this little tirade is based on my current situation. I recently quit my job and moved across country, to live in the mountains. I’m off a dirt road, surrounded by beauty, fresh air and all the time in the world to write. It was supposed to be perfect. Unfortunately, I really wanted to move to the Rockies. My life partner wanted to go the the east coast. We wanted to be together, so, we moved to the Appalachians.

There are trees everywhere. So many of them that you can’t tell where you are. It’s not quiet. This damn place is full of something called cicadas and they make a shrill racket worse than any city noise I’ve ever heard. I’m hoping I can write here, but I wouldn’t know because after two months I am still unpacking. This is not what I had planned. It is not perfect.

Pick up and move again? Difficult and very expensive, but possible. Or try learning to love this new home?

Yesterday, I learned how to use a chain saw.  It’s not complicated, but it takes a little confidence with power tools that I needed to gain. Point forward,  I’m going to take down one tree every week until I can see out in at least one direction. I like trees. But I figure that there will still be four million of them within my view, so I’m not exactly affecting the amount of oxygen on this planet.

grassI’ve also discovered that cicadas die off at the end of summer and the really good news is that summer ends here in September like it should. So there is hope for quiet. As to the writing? The stories are starting to form in my head again, in spite of the time I am spending unpacking. They’ll want to be put on paper soon.

They say the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. Here in my new home, the grass is actually greenest right above our septic system. I’m not sure exactly what that proves, but I think I’ll stay put for now and try to figure it out.

(For more thoughts on making major life changes see my blog posts Wise and Quiet, Am I a Shape Shifter Now? and If You’re Going to be an Old Car.)

Am I turning into a wild animal?

Hip and HumbleI’m finding it ever more difficult to stay indoors these days. Cooked food doesn’t even sound good. I suppose some of it is stress. There is a big change coming up, and a move across the country, and of course a lot of new things are going follow. Still, I’ve been through these sorts of upheavals before, and my normal reaction is to, you know, eat chocolate and drink wine. Watch more TV and sleep late.

This time around, I can hardly make myself look at a clock, and my electronic devices all irritate me. I’m waking up before my alarm and I get though my day watching and waiting and I’m not sure for what. I mentioned to my husband that once we moved, I might just live on the porch for awhile and not come inside for days.

“Do you think maybe I’m turning into a wild animal?” I asked him. “Like, I used to be domesticated and it’s wearing off? Sort of like, I don’t know, rose bushes that revert back to what ever it was that they really were before some nursery grafted something else on to them?”

I can tell that I’ve lost him with the roses thing.  He’s not much of a gardener and he’s got no idea of what I’m talking about.

“You’re fine,” he laughs.

“How do you know?” I want a little concern here, some acknowledgement of the oddity of my situation.

“I know you. You love being outside. It’s where you go to calm down. But you are always going to come inside to use the bathroom, and you’ll never get so wild that you’ll turn down ice cream. That’s good enough for me.”

Me too, I guess. Once we move, maybe I’ll metamorphose into a creature that craves the sun and the wind and sky, but who won’t give up her indoor plumbing and can always be called with a dish of frozen sea salt caramel yogurt. That could work for us both.