In August, I took a trip out to Colorado to see some of my favorite people and places, the first time I had been back since I moved home 15 months previously. After briefly seeing a coworker and learning that my same position was currently open, I pretty much decided right then and there that I was moving back, however, I went home and thought on the decision for another five seconds, then officially decided that I was leaving Maryland yet again.
Day after day after day, I wasn’t any happier living back in Maryland. Everyone kept asking me what I was going to be doing with my life. What made you all think I have it figured out just because I’m back in Maryland? In fact, because I’m here again I have it less figured out…because I’m less motivated to figure it all out. I feel like I’m just existing again. Just blending. In a stationary routine, again.
Believe me I try to find reasons to be happy here; family, friends, safety, familiarity. But wait, no, I don’t think all of those things are what I need at all. Of course, spending some final time with my grandma is nice to do again, but we can’t go out and eat every week like we used to; can’t do it easily at least. It’s all a process now, and most days she doesn’t want to do anything. She’s also pretty bitter anymore. She finally made me cry. I had to take a break from seeing her.
We used to laugh a lot.
Then there’s my right hand man, my love, strength, everything, but he has his own life before me and I’m needy these days. He can’t do it all, he tries, but he’s only human, and I don’t know that I’m right for him.
Then there’s my right and my left legs, my mom and dad. They got me where I needed to be in life and have always had my back. These two incredibly smart individuals somehow created, me this directionless 25 year old, but I still haven’t let them down. Anyway, they’re still young and I shouldn’t stick around for them just yet.
Then I wonder yet again why I’m here.
I think I have to stick it out a bit since I made the effort to come back here. Can’t possibly just turn around quite yet. So what do I do?
Find a year lease in the city to ensure I stay here. I find a few side gigs for some extra $ so that I can live a bit more comfortably. Right before I move in my car stops dead in the middle of Harford Rd. My dad tells me he’ll pay for the $800 dollars of damage because he knows I have no money. That alone is a wake up call. Like hi Kaitlyn, your father is stilling paying for your shit. Regardless, I manage to pick up my car and pay a portion before he gets to the car shop. I did what I could.
I turn in my rental application. I’m still going to move. Then two weeks later, I dislocate my knee cap, again. Ambulance ride, ER visit and follow up appointments… How hell can I afford this? Certainly can’t with my low paying job. My boss didn’t even acknowledge me at work THE NEXT DAY. Yes, I went to work 15 hours post-ER visit. (Thanks for the support! Not.) Anyway, my doctor said surgery may be a good idea, too. My side gigs fall through because I can’t walk. I can’t even bathe myself and I have to move everything I own in three weeks. I search for jobs, apply, search, apply. Waiting for a miracle here. Oh wait, I also have to figure out what to get my Masters degree in too so that real life can start, but I have no idea what to do at this point.
I like writing. I’d like to write as a job, but is there real money in that? Not unless you’re really damn good at it. At this point all I’m good at is injuring myself and burying myself deeper into a black hole of debt.
Although, I’d really like to write for a living, but this blog doesn’t give me shit in return.
I guess I feel a little better at least.
While I always knew that Colorado was temporary for me, an adventure of sorts rather than a move to grow roots, I’ve been asked to come home a bit earlier than I expected.
I’m going to be a helping hand to my grandma back in my hometown. My daddy-o asked this of me and, well, one can’t say no to dad. Besides, my grandma has had my back since day one so now it’s time to have hers.
As of now I have 9 days left in Colorado. It’s kind of depressing to think about but I plan on making the most of my time back at home by starting violin again, prepping for my graduate school application, and seeing my family. I’m also going to take advantage of the Appalachian Mountains and national parks. Arvind and I already have white water rafting on our summer list!
Lord knows Baltimore isn’t going to be permanent for me either but it may be where I end up going back to school. After that however, I’ll be gone again. I’m excited to think about where I’ll end up growing my roots with my love. At 25 the possibilities remain endless.
& I love that.
Living (adj): not dead : having life
Since moving out to Colorado my definition of living has changed. My definition of living is mentioned above. The reality is that that’s the only definition there is. Exploring, creating, impacting, learning, are all things you do while you’re living. I used to believe that doing something outrageous and spontaneous was the only way to truly live. I was wrong in that the only way to live is to keep breathing. So please, keep breathing.
I once ended one of my ‘inspiring’ blog posts about moving to Colorado with something like “go live.” A while later I was thinking about that cliche and how everyone reading my post was obviously living and that telling someone to live doesn’t make sense. I should have ended it with something like “don’t be afraid to experience.” Clearly you’re living if your reading this post [& thank you for reading of course]. I promise no more cliches, okay?!
Breathing + experiencing = life.
& don’t let someone tell you what you have to do to live. You don’t need to move across the county to get the ultimate life experience. For me, Colorado was a place I thought was beautiful, a place I wanted to dive into for a period of time for my own pleasure and growth. For some people it may be a different state or country, or perhaps even ten minutes from where you grew up.
But whatever you do, do what makes you happy and fulfilled. Do something because you love it. Do it with your whole being. Do it because you don’t know any other way.
Don’t do something to prove some point or because you want to appear a certain way to the people you know. If that’s what you’re doing then you’re not doin’ you. Be comfortable with what you’re doing, whatever it may be. Be a teacher if you want, or don’t. Be a scientist if you want, or don’t. Be a photographer if you want, or don’t. Travel the world if you want, or simply don’t.
Live without needing to prove a point.
If you have to keep telling people “who you are” you’re doing it wrong. Let actions speak and let them reflect your true self. Prove to yourself–not to others. This life thing will be far more enjoyable that way I promise.
Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.
Once someone hurt me, badly.
Wastes of oxygen. We cross paths with them throughout life. Sometimes it’s a quick encounter and unfortunately other times it’s not. I happened to cross paths with one for well over 4 years, and it became something rather infectious for well over 3. I left that person in the dark 14 months ago and never looked back. I had found a normal, caring, warm-hearted and genuine man that wanted nothing more than for me to be okay. I now understand how happy I could been for those 3+ years. I am now the luckiest girl in the world, thanks to you.
To Whom it No Longer Concerns,
When I say that your life, or the life you claim to live, is a completely self-created and made up pile of shit, what do you think? You think I’m wrong, and you think I’m wrong because by 39 you’ve persuaded yourself that you really are this brilliant, widely admired, God-like prodigy of a human. You feed off of the admiration you receive from the students you teach to the people you meet on the street. However, the thing is that they don’t admire you, they admire the person they think you are. Like them, I was fooled once, too. Unfuckingfortunately, I was given the extended opportunity to find out who you really are. While I was the person you screwed over the hardest, there are other wonderful and beautiful people you hurt, too.
You lied to people to make your life look better, to make yourself feel better, and to boost that low self-esteem and self-image. You wanted another high. When the high is gone or someone calls you out on your bullshit you move on to your next victim. I’m aware that you’ve done it again. You’re pathetic. Small world, eh?
Please tell me how much effort does it take to live multiple lives and impersonate multiple people? Is it really worth all of that effort, and for so long, just to control someone’s life? My life–and it’s all because you can’t control your own.
Please, allow me to tell you who you are since you clearly don’t know.
Now clinically speaking you are mentally ill. I personally call it being extremely fucked, however, given my college degree I’d say at least 30% of your fucked-ness stems from a Dissociative Identity Disorder. Examples of this were basically everything that came out of your mouth, but specifically when you impersonated famous musicians as well as doctors that treated you at the hospital…that you didn’t attend because you weren’t ill…because the location of the photos you sent me from said hospital showed your home address, you know, the home where you lived with your wife. The place you slept when you told me you were sleeping in a hospital bed.
Remember you told us all you were divorced and that you ex was a bitch and an ‘ice queen’.
Please refer to DSM-IV to learn about the other 70% of your problems because diagnosing you isn’t why I’m writing this and I refuse to give you anymore of my time.
I want to close with some real life shit because I am a real person with real relationships and real experiences.
Fun facts first:
- Your new job has their suspicions and their eyes on you thanks to the internet and me having a fully functional brain. I’m not the only one who contacted them. I know who came after me.
The 3+ years I was manipulated by you doesn’t define me. The way you made me feel doesn’t define me. The way you used the people I love most doesn’t define me nor them. Your lies that I at one time believed don’t define me. The number of times you humiliated me doesn’t define me.
You took advantage of someone pure and beautiful. You dimmed that shine in her eye, that warmth in her smile, but you didn’t break her because you weren’t strong enough. You will never be strong enough.
You see, the time you stole from me I can’t get back. I can’t use it to spend more time with my grandfather, now deceased. I can’t use it to spend time with the people that mean the most to me. I can’t use it to spend with my grandmother who is now ill. You know, she would ask about you because she is the kindness of souls, but I politely tell her that you lied about your illness and your life. Since then, she has only asked about Arvind and absolutely adores him. He comes with me to visit her. He buys her flowers. That’s what real relationships are like.
I have learned some things as a result of what you took from me. I now know the value of time and how precious it is. I now waste very little. I now am strong and wise. I now have an appreciation for every experience and every relationship. I now know what love is. Real love–something you will never feel nor deserve.
Let me tell you, real love is untamed and invigorating. It makes you want to laugh until you cry, to dance until you fall over. It makes you want to be a better person. It gives you perspective. It makes everything else in the world a little less important. Love gives you a little bit of everything you’ll ever need.
Thanks to you, I know where rock bottom is and I’ll never be back. You, however, have always lived there and you always will. Rock bottom is where cowards like you live because they’re ashamed of their disgraceful lives. You may have screwed me over, my family, my friends, but I will never be ashamed of my life.
The time I [kinda] spent with you: a total waste.
The lessons I learned from it: invaluable.
I am beautiful. I am vibrant. I am strong. I am fortunate. I am wildly in love.
This guy right here, a real man. Next to him, pure bliss.
How? Well, in the same way following your heart can be! In my case, doing super rad things and following my heart meant moving to Colorado. So here I am. I moved here 5 months and 13 days ago. I had no doubts, no potential earth shaking struggles I could think of. However, in my recent realization I have concluded that I’m not adjusting to life here as well as I kept telling myself I was. BUT HOW!? There is an overwhelming amount of beauty and fresh air here! A clean slate, too! Life here is basically a continuous vacation.
So, self, what’s the dilemma?
For a start, the week after I moved my lovely Grandma’s (aka Gram Cracka) health started to decline and since then it’s only gotten worse. Since I’m her only grandchild it blows twice as hard. I’ve been going home more often than I initially expected. I’ve also been calling her excessively. So really, I’m not able to put total energy into adjusting to my new Colorado life. Secondly, my child (aka dog) Ellie… I miss this thing to death and being without her can be a real challenge considering every single person in Boulder has at least 1 dog. She’s the piece of home that I could really use during an adjustment like this. Lastly, my lover is still living in Baltimore.
Here’s the thing about moving across the country:
IT’S REALLY EXCITING TO THINK ABOUT BEFORE IT HAPPENS.
IT’S REALLY EXCITING WHEN YOU GET THERE. LIFE IS A TOTAL VACATION UNTIL WORK BEGINS.
You finally wrap your head around the fact that this new place is now home. One of two thoughts then occur:
1. Fuck yes-I love life. (overwhelming excitement)
2. How did I get here and why? (total fucking confusion)
It isn’t even that I’m home sick, although I do worry about Gram Cracka, but I know everyone else there is alive and well. I also know that I have the resources to come back whenever I need to (aka I’m not a hobo). I just have this gut feeling that another place is better for me, and that’s okay. I’m also excited to figure out where that place is! I’m also enjoying the cheap rent so that I can explore the shit out of this place and the rest of the wild west.
Some people think I’m crazy. Some people envy me. Some people are dying to visit this place now that they’ve seen excessive Facebook photos of my life here. Some people think I have guts. Some people are like “omg I could never” in which case please go away. But really, anyone can do this, it’s only uprooting and leaving the only place you’ve ever called home along with everyone is there…
All in all it’s been the best adventure yet, and it sure as hell won’t be the last.
Advice for those who want some change: Go before you talk yourself out of it.
Why do I willingly go into work at 7am? Let me give you an idea…
The sun rises in Boulder come in all different colors, cloud types, and intensity. When my world wakes up, it’s a beautiful thing. Some of these photos are taken from my car and some from my desk–so they aren’t the most well thought out photos…I’d like to share the beauty.
I’m one lucky gal.