let’s be wise and honor all the lows and all the highs
There have been a lot of talks between Sam and me lately about where to live when we move out of our apartment this Spring. We had solid plans to move to Cincinnati, and were planning a trip to look for a place to live. However, the more we’ve talked and thought, the more we’re drawn to staying in Tampa.
It hasn’t been an easy decision by any stretch. A few weeks ago, Blondie the kitten died, and the loss has been difficult for us. Just a few days prior, Sam and I had decided to keep Blondie, his sister Creedence, and our two older cats, Dot and Kato. With Blondie dying, the choice was in front of us to choose one of the other kittens to keep, or not. In the end, we felt we couldn’t part with any of the cats, so we’re keeping all of them: three adult cats and four kittens.
Even if you’ve never had the experience, I’m sure you can appreciate just how cramped a one-bedroom apartment is with seven felines and two humans.
We’re working out where we’re going to live right now, but what I really want to write about is something I said yesterday on twitter and facebook and my thoughts around the reaction.
The comment in question: ‘There are moments, like now, where I don’t want to live here (Tampa), because I don’t have any close friends. Feeling lonesome today.‘
I was sitting in a Starbucks, working on pages for a journal, and just felt that wave of sadness. I’ve been learning more about myself, and adding things to my Book of Skaja. (note: More info about the Book of You on Havi’s website.) One of the things I’ve noticed is that if I choose to withhold my emotions, they eventually explode at the most inopportune times.
In Which I Give Some Background
Sam moved to Tampa a couple years before I moved in with him. He’s been introverted most of his life, from what he’s told me, and feels less social. As such, he didn’t have friends in the city.
I have a difficult time making friends face to face, though I am (apparently more) social. We have several acquaintances in the area now, but no one we’d call up and invite over for dinner. I think because we just haven’t cultivated that kind of friendship, and because our apartment is a safe space for us to truly be ourselves and recharge.
I’ve been living in Tampa for almost two years, and while I feel I have budding friendships in the area, I don’t have any close friends.
Part of the appeal of moving North (to Cincinnati, perhaps) was that I’d be living closer to both family and to my best friend, Vas. However, I was not looking forward to starting over in a new place. Plus finding a rental that would allow seven cats would be difficult at best, and I was not keen on buying a house in an unknown area.
So, Sam and I are staying in Tampa.
Back To The Point
I’m very aware of how lucky I have things right now, and that I’m married to a good man. However, I think it is unreasonable to expect anyone to not feel lonely sometimes. Further comments I made yesterday: I wonder about people who never have anything good to say. I also wonder about people who never have anything bad to say. That said, I clarify my earlier post that I am not ungrateful for what I have. I am noticing the emotions that come up and express them. Perhaps what I say could help someone else. Bottom line: I am happy. And being Skaja, who refuses to bottle up emotions anymore. And that’s not to say that you have to say those bad things in a public forum. I simply wonder about people who are happy all the freaking time.
Makes me wonder if pod-people do exist.
On Twitter, I received some positive, supportive replies. On Facebook, I received rather unsupportive replies from an acquaintance that make me second guess myself. Sam and I had a long talk about it, and he reassured me that I was making a good point, which is this:
I’m not complaining about my life and that I hate where I live because I have no friends. Instead, I expressed an emotion that I had, recognized it for what it was, and moved on.
If I had opted to suppress the emotion, the following would have resulted: I would have become more upset, and less wanting to create. I would have felt guilty for not completing a piece for a series I’m working on, or would have not enjoyed making the piece. And I would have gone home, upset, and cried in bed for days.
Instead, I expressed the emotion, had a productive talk with my husband, finished my arting session, and spoke with three different people who noticed me drawing. I also had a further productive discussion with Vas about the original post and the follow-up comments.
The title of this post comes from a song by my friend Sean Kagalis, called Wise. To me, the song means that life is what it is, and we do the best we can. It is a love song, reminding us that life is full of ups and downs and by honoring both, we grow as people and become the best versions of ourselves. For ourselves and for the people we love and who love us.
I am grateful for what I have: my husband, my cats, my friends. I have a place to live and food to eat everyday. I’m able to draw whenever I want.
But, I still have sad feelings, and I still express those feelings. To refuse to do so is to deny parts of myself.
And that just does a disservice to me and the people whose lives I touch.