Christmas is over, new year's is coming. Joy oh joy oh joy.
As tradition dictates, I went "home" for the holiday - hopped my friend Amtrak four hours from the Windy City to a place where cell phone reception is scarce and my dad's road didn't get paved until six months ago. An eventful five days later, I reversed the process and made my way back to my real home, where I'm building the life I want step by slow, painful step.
Yeah, folks, she's all dramatic this morning.
Let's sum up the eventful parts of the past week: mom went to the ER on Christmas; saw "Return of the King" for the third time thus far (review for that will need a separate, spoiler-filled entry); drove my dad's truck all over hell and creation and remembered that I actually used to enjoy driving, especially when it's a stick; drove on snow for the first time in.....well, a couple years; closed down the smallest small-town bar with my good friend J after first visiting another small-town bar wherein some jocky asshole (who, prior to his essentially sitting on my lap and practically knocking me off my chair six times, I had originally considered sorta hot in a "hey, I'm from Chicago, and you'll never hear from me again" kinda way) annoyed me until we left; made a killing in the presents arena (it's good to have distinct but predictable taste wherein people can always manage to find cool shit to buy you for gifts) while basically giving some of the shittiest presents ever - with the exception of those I got for my neice (furry bear-claw slippers are a guaranteed hit with the kids); agonized over various issues currently at the forefront of my mind (some family-related, some band-related) and tried (and failed) to be less pissed off....yeah, that was about it. I spent a great deal of time either driving back and forth between parents' houses or trying to relax and not compulsively plan out the rest of the year and the year to come.
Going home like that always makes me a little crazy, but this year something was very different. I felt....I dunno....less connected to the people and the places. I didn't get the re-energized feeling I usually do when I go home. For me, that always feels like a way to remind myself where i came from, who I am at my very core, the bare and basic essence of my identity....except this time, I didn't feel like that rock-solid grounding was under my feet anymore. I mean, don't get me wrong, I had a hella good time, and i got to spend some much-needed time with my family...but I just felt a little adrift, less like a part of that whole, and more like an observer. It was weird, and a little unsettling.
Non-conformists always feel like outsiders, don't they?
I came back yesterday morning and jumped right into things, spending the afternoon shopping with K and resolutely for her and not myself (though I did break down and grab a gorgeous black pearl and titanium necklace and earrings because it was on clearance and also fabulous!). I spent the evening watching bad TV and doing a little cleaning and trying not to compulsively make plans about my life for the next year...but today, that's what I'll be doing, in between multi-tasking my way to the end of the business year and trying not to be too far behind when the calendar rolls over. This is going to be a rough year, I can tell - there will be changes, there will be growth, and unless I miss my guess, there will be plenty of joy.
I only say there will be joy, because no matter what crazy shit happens to me, I refuse to stop being joyful and loving every second of my miserable existence. See, as a wise actor once told me (though he was talking about sex, and I am talking about life, though the metaphor applies to both)....life is like pizza: even when it's bad, it's good.
Loud-mouthed liberal feminist. Anarchist knitter. Tequila-drinking artsy-smartsy fat chick. Bluesy folk-rock singer-songwriter. Rebel with too many causes. Quirky eclectic pagan poet. Paradoxical intuitive smartass. Sarcastic brainiac insomniac. You know, for starters.