Especially on social media. This is probably not such a great habit, but lately it has been almost like an addiction. I feel so disconnected from my friends and the life I have had for the past few years and sometimes putting a dramatic statement up on facebook is the only way of breaking that feeling of isolation.
But I don’t want people to think that I am an unhappy person. I don’t think of myself as a sad person. I think of myself as someone who is not living a fulfilling life right now, but I haven’t given up hope. Not yet. I still have some of my tenacious faith in me yet, or maybe that is just God being merciful enough to keep making that rope longer and longer as I slide down it.
Living in this city is not what I expected it to be. When I lived here before I was working at Starbucks & the YMCA as well as going to school at UALR. I was majoring in religious studies and I was in such a different place mentally and emotionally. I was so drained from my split from the Ex that all I wanted was to disappear into the hub of a busy college and mindless work. The last thing I wanted was to form any sort of lasting relationships. I had exactly three friends in the metro, and only 1 of them, Adam, who I spent the most time with, recently moved to Ft. Smith, where he seems to be doing really well. Though I miss him so much, I know that he is where he is supposed to be. Back when I lived here before I had a car too, and I could drive home to see friends from HSU whenever I wanted.
Now, living here is a totally different experience. I find myself wanting to establish deeper relationships with some of the people around me and I’m struggling with how to do that
I feel like people have a lot of misconceptions about me, for instance, most people assume that because I am loud and expressive, that I am also outgoing. This is in-fact hugely inaccurate. People make me terribly nervous. I am loud and opinionated out of the necessity of it. As the youngest of four kids, if you want anything to ever go your way, you have to be something of a fighter (If you have a big, crazy, involved family like me, you know that either you say nothing or you shout everything) but being in a big family also comes with perks, like having friends just easily built into your life. Being in the art & Theatre department for most of college also made making friends very easy- mandatory late nights working with each other for weeks on end- it was like a family too.
You would think working at a school, it would be easy to establish relationships with others. Several of my co-workers are my age or around, and I have a lot in common with some of them, yet because of the nature of the several jobs I have at the school, I am never in any one place long enough to have real conversations with anyone and I am having a hard time translating work-friendship into real-life friendship. I also have met some great people at church, but honestly I feel like I am in such a different stage of life then most of them and I wonder what on earth they would want to hang out with me for when I have no perspective on life with a husband or kids. I know I could be more proactive about this and just ask people to hang out, but I live with my sister and I have no car so you can see how that would make navigating that kind of difficult.
Pair that with the fact that I am terribly discouraged about my creative dreams, as well as lacking any time and energy to pursue them, and I make for a pretty glum girl.
I miss projects- I miss team oriented activities like putting on a play, painting a mural, designing a newspaper.
And most of all I am very tired of feeling lost about how to change all of this. It’s as if I have been given a starting point- now, and a goal point- friends, projects, etc… and yet no instructions for how to get from one point to another.
I have been thinking of saving my money for a vehicle of some sort, just so I have some independent transportation, but even that seems like a ways off since I still am working on just making up bills from the three months of unemployment.
Like I said though, I haven’t lost all hope, and for now I am trying to learn to just be grateful for what I have and keep putting one foot in front of the other. That is very counter to my inherent nature of living for the big picture stuff, but for now, I feel like I don’t really have any other choice.
Like Dori says, “Just keep swimmin, just keep swimmin!”