up, clearing out, forging a future
life without me
isolated cabin in the woods as a Thoreauean ideal was dealt a serious
blow by Ted Kaczynski, but I'm willing to light a fire under it.
Blow those bad overtones sky high.
Okay, enough. I have always wanted to escape to an
ideal. Now I will. You can safely open any packages from me, unless
they smell heavily of cheap wine. Then, beware.
I quit my job yesterday.
I'm packing up, I'm clearing out, I'm forging a new
future for myself. God, I'm exhausted. I am leaping, I am catapulting,
I am ... falling off a precipice?
No, no, I am boldly going where ... fuck that. I am
simply making of my life what I will. I am tired of living scared,
going through the motions, letting others lead me where I never
meant to be.
So I watched Coixet's "My Life Without Me"
a few nights ago and at first, when the protagonist made the list
of things she wanted to do before she died, I was pretty pissed,
or maybe just sad, that she didn't want some things more exciting,
more lasting in some way. But as I watched, I realized: this was
good enough for her. But not for me.
If I were to know I would die, what would I want?
Time and inclination to write, to be beautiful in
words, to amuse myself and others with my own turn of phrase. To
see new things without wanting to change them into something potentially
better. To accept. To teach my daughter her own worth. To spare
her some of the pain, but not the pain that heals, that eventually
exhilarates. To forgive my younger self.
So, need anything? I have couches, beds, gardening tools, power
tools, china, crystal, gadgets, pets, clothes, linen, artwork, the
accumulation of years of trying to be happy surrounding myself with
stuff. And the only things I ever regretted selling off were my
books. I can do without a crock pot, a breadmaker, a king size bed.
I'm pretty sure I can do without six different sets of china, even
if some were my grandmother's. I can do without a dining set that
was my grandfather's. In fact, I have a lot of stuff that I never
chose, but was thrust upon me by my mother. I will sell it and deal
with the guilt of shirking charity, and history.
I am shedding, not simply sloughing. Not dying, but recognizing
the potential of death.
Is that living?