And so just like that... I am about to put in an application on a rental house in Ohio. What? How the hell did this happen? It was only weeks ago that Mike and I sat down and had a serious talk about the idea of me moving up there... if I did, how would we do this? I decided, after having lived with Drew's parents since he died, I need to get a place of my own again and establish myself. It's the only way that feels right to me... moving in with Mike and his daughter would be too rushed right now.
Immediately when I thought about it – my fear began to subside and my excitement grew. To have my own place again... something I have yearned for so much since he died and I moved here. To be close to Mike, and also within a day's drive of my sister, my extended family, and many of my widowed friends I have met these past three years. No doubt, this is a good and positive new direction. No doubt this is the direction I am being pulled towards. So after that talk, I started to look for small rental houses casually... with the notion that I would actually move sometime next year, perhaps summer.
Well, the universe really doesn't like to fuck around. I should know this by now. Instead of the gentle ushering from here and moving there, it dropped a big ass grenade of NEW in front of me. There on my computer screen, the perfect housing situation pops up... one that was so good I could not resist calling on it. And now I am left with making a very big decision that I was in no way prepared to make (or so I thought)...
It is a large family who owns a second house on a gorgeous, wooded 4 acre lot, and they want to rent this quirky little home out for a VERY small sum in exchange for some cleaning work in their home each week. It's a steal. And the house, it's huge. At least to me. At least compared to the shoebox apartments I've lived in all my life. And with the low rent I would be able to work part time and still focus on my art and writing. Oh, and they have chickens, I love chickens. For where I am at in my life, it is my dream home.
A few weeks have passed now. Mike has gone to check it out for me and meet the owner. I've got an application in the mail, and I'll be up there in a week to look at it myself... at which point the owners will make their decision. They have only one other person they are considering, and like me enough to be willing to wait till I make it up to decide. So the odds are at least 50/50 that I could be living in northern Ohio before the year is out. Just like that. Just one month ago, this was a vague idea for sometime in the undetermined future. As I said... the universe does not like to fuck around. It is always just shoving people into things. What is it with that?
I am excited and devastated all in the same breath by all this. There are so many emotions rushing through me – it feels like a flooded river, the currents just thrashing about inside my heart and my mind. I am excited beyond belief for a few days until something triggers a new layer of the grief in regards to leaving here and I am totally lost in the sadness and trauma. I mean just slammed back into my grief the way that I used to be that first year. It's scary. Not only did I uproot my whole life after Drew died... leaving the city for the country and leaving my friends and my career behind... but it all happened at this time of year exactly three years ago. In August of 2012, I was making all of these same big decisions to leave one life behind and go find another. So the seasonal alignment is also not helping.
I guess part of me feels like I am reliving it all. I am trying to remember though, this time, it is for very different reasons. It isn't because I just lost everything two months ago. It isn't because I can't deal with my job or seeing the city we called home. It is because there are new people in my life and new experiences that I want to be a part of. And because I feel ready to go on a new leg of my own journey and discover who I will be there.
It is so hard not to listen to all my fears. I could barely work or do much of anything for at least 6 months after Drew died. I was so fragile. I think some part of me is afraid I will somehow revert back into all that when I move somewhere so far away and so foreign (I've never lived outside of Texas or more than 8 hours from where I grew up). I'm afraid it will trigger a major eruption. But those fears are just trying to watch out for me, keep me safe. I know this. And I know that the best thing I can do for now is let them be heard and then remind them that I am NOT that fragile anymore. I am more healed, and stronger than I have ever been. And furthermore, I have been through so much more change and made it out the other side. I can do this.
I will not be alone where I am going, this helps too. I will have Mike there, and I will have my family closer by, too. And this is one of those times that I am just going to have to wade through the messy, terrifying unknowns that go through my head until the thing is actually happening. It's the only way to find out whether I can do it or not - to just do it. And deep down, I want to do this. Deep down, I know, it's time to move forward. Deep down, I am in a place in my grief and my life where I am excited for new challenges and new worlds. It IS time, but that doesn't mean it is easy. It is still hard as hell.
If this all pans out, I know I will take Drew with me in the very warmest part of my heart and we will both go on a new adventure together. I don't know where life is taking me in these next months ahead... and that is scary as fuck, but I do at least one thing: Drew will always come with me, wherever I go. I'm never without him. In some small way, that does bring me comfort. That, and the idea of being able to dance around naked to Madonna in my own kitchen again, and pee with bathroom door open, and watch Family Guy for hours on end without bothering anyone. Yeah... That does help. Living with family has been a blessing, but I sure do miss all those little things about living alone. And with that, I guess there is nothing left to do put pop a Xanax, take a deep breath, and go full speed ahead into this unknown bitch of a hard life and remind it who it's dealing with. I'm gonna take my joy, no matter how hard it is to get... I am gonna come and take it. I am gonna dream another dream for my life and I am gonna build it.