Apparently all the chatter in my head has been privatized and denied entry into the allegedly permanent cyber-world. As of late, I’ve been far too busy bemoaning my own Fate, dreading the process of aging, regretting that I’ve always thought I was incredibly old (when I was incredibly young) and years beyond when I should’ve reached “great success” and cooking away my cares. It’s been a financially fruitful year, yet instead of enjoying the ride I’m worrying about the uncertainty of the future. I made it an immediate, imminent goal to pay of my student loans entirely, with a voice in the back of my head teasing me with thoughts that student loans will be forgiven the moment I reach this goal. I’ve begun reading “War and Peace,” another component of my life goals, simply because it seems more easily attainable than the myriad of other quests for glory. And with so many of my peers marching throughout Wall Street and beyond, I look to them with the same shattering naivete that maybe we aren’t all given the same chances to progress as individuals. And maybe the odds are stacked against some of us more than we’ve ever known before. Yet in spite of this, I cannot help but forgive the voice carrying me through each day, the optimistic echo in the chambers of my most recently depressed mind, that somehow the universe has a greater call for all of us. And even should we never realize it, living through a challenging life with such promise and hope, is better than to have none at all. Such thoughts have instilled my desire to get a tattoo– and not a fairy, or butterfly, or some other innocuous, pretty thing. If I were to get one, it would be subversive and inappropriate, with the phrase, “Fate is a fickle bitch” etched across my behind. Because, She really is.
As a teenager I was quite obsessed with “The Bridges of Madison County.” I read the book a number of times, but watched the film multiple times a week, allowing my hormonal youngster self to cry steadily with every viewing. But there was a disillusioned line by Clint Eastwood’s character that I’ve only come to understand in time. He alluded to the dreams he had but never realized, explaining he was still glad that he had them. I couldn’t fathom how having a dream that went unfound was worth having at all. The thought was morbid and alarming, beyond my rose-tinted grasp, but has now come to feel frighteningly relatable. Not a day passes of late that I don’t attempt to dig up the enthusiasm, the zest, and the promise that I had ten or eleven years ago. I miss the passion that flowed through me every morning I set out on the city streets, confident and assured that my contributions to society would be inspiring to others, and more importantly, lasting. It was a far warmer feeling than the cool, detached thoughts of “whatever is the point?”
And so, this is why I haven’t blogged or written or dreamed beyond my current situation. I’ve been living in the moment, as much as possible, fulfilling little beyond the small joys of each day. I’m content, but anxious. I play with my dog, I play the piano, and spend a good part of the day creating new recipes and unsuccessfully convincing myself that I should not feel guilty for embracing simple tasks and abandoning my lofty goals. I look at the noise, partake in the cyber-social-networking chatter, to then want to run away from it all. The self-promotion, the gossip, the connecting and networking, the send-outs, the mailings and all the “work” behind being a successful artist are of such little desire to me. It feels like an anxiety-producing waste of time. It makes me fall back on my innermost hope, that synchronicity and the greater powers of the universe will collide into a perfect success and life’s fulfillment. I can’t even tell if my resistance is just pure laziness, or if it has deeper roots to what I really desire in this life. I recently spent eight days in Jamaica, where the motto is, “There are no problems, ‘mon. It’s just a situaaaayyytion.” To be away from the Internet, the social webs breeding one-ups, petty competition, and ties to many people I’d never give second thought to at this stage in my life, felt so freeing. I feel so tethered to this constant stream of useless news, addicted to compulsively following it, recognizing a world of problems that should be treated as situations. There is such a strong part of me that wants to one day escape to a bucolic seaside town and disengage from these distractions that keep us further and further away from what is real and tangible. The sunlight, the warm waters, the salty air, and gentle breezes surpassed any feeling this modern technology has bestowed upon me. And yet here I am, tonight, back into the online world, expressing my woes and still married to this idea that I need to make a splash. I read “New York Magazine” this week and was drawn to a quote from my generation which said, “Maybe I don’t have to make a splash. Maybe I’ll be okay with just keeping afloat.”
I wish I felt more afloat, or at least more inspired to go above and beyond my greatest ambitions and dreams. But for now, it’s back to making kettle corn, reading “War and Peace” and taking in as much theatre and film as I can. I particularly recommend “Sons of the Prophet,” which I saw today during a matinee showing, arousing some emotional chord that has been hard to find lately. Maybe it is just seasonal, this dreaded resignation to colder weather and less sunshine for the coming months. But at least I know this, as everything else, is merely a moment.