Thursday, March 25, 2010

Waiting for My Real Life to Begin

Any minute now my ship is coming in...I'll keep checking the horizon, and I'll stand in the bow.

It is dark and the lights below rise to meet me. When the door opens, I repeat the steps that I've repeated over and over. I move because moving is expected. I walk fast because walking fast make me appear to have purpose, and it is important to keep up appearances. Even if there is really no one watching. The stores are all closed for the day, the gates pulled down, and the place is mostly empty. But still I walk fast.

And I'll check my machine, There's sure to be that call, It's gonna happen soon, soon, oh so very soon... It's just that times are lean.

While I walk, I try to remember how it is I got... here. Not necessarily the physical here... but the timeline here. I retrace my footsteps in my head, and visually connect the moments. But it is like a morning dream. An amalgam of dreams of the whole night. Disjointed snippets and images which, combined, make no sense. We make due and weave our stories together in ways that tell a narrative. But often the writing isn't as good as we hoped.

And you said,"Be still, my love. Open up your heart. Let the light shine in"

I think it is inevitable that the cheerleaders in our lives grow out of the uniforms eventually. The skirts and pom-poms that once looked so fetching, now look absurd. That is the definition, I suppose, of the end of love. When the new stories in our lives sound so much like the old stories in our lives that those that once believed, can no longer rouse themselves off the couch for long enough to feign interest. I wish for that voice to say... "Be still." But all I hear is the echoes from long ago.

Don't you understand? I already have a plan. I'm waiting for my real life to begin.

First it was film. Then writing. I could go through a whole laundry list of them. Something... anything creative that allows the world not to view me as just another poor sot. Anything but the corporate hustle to make other people money. But we put our energies where they need to be to stay employed. The helpful adages of "do what you love" become replaced by the realism of "do what pays the bills". And find those things that keep you going in other places. And instead of waiting for others to cheer... cheer yourself instead.

And so I move. Walking fast, and waiting for my real life to begin.


  1. the tile in my kitchen says 'for your ship to come in, you have to build a dock'

    i suck at building.

  2. You need to find a friend with a dinghy that you can ride on.

    That is, perhaps, the most perverted comment in my long line of perverted comments.

  3. I'm torn between that do what you love thing and the do what pays the bills thing.

  4. And I'm stuck at paying the bills...and have stopped sleeping so there's time to do what I love. *sigh*

  5. Kids make that second part harder to ignore.

  6. LOL ride the dinghy. i think i just snorted out my sugarfree grape koolaid

  7. @chantel- sleeping is overrated.

    @char... you ARE living... sugarfree grape koolaid.

  8. I will keep waiting... and wondering what I want to be when I grow up. (That was probably supposed to happen 10 or 15 yrs. ago. Oh well.)

    Lovely post!

  9. I've been waiting for my real life to begin for... oh thirty years, give or take. I always thought that when I turned 30 I'd have my shit together. Not so. Not at all. But the fun part if figuring that out.

  10. Dammit! I mean IS, and not IF. Grrr.

  11. @ann... welcome... and thank you.

    @twills... it didn't get any better at 40. maybe 50? I think the 30s and 40s are for losing it... and then it all makes sense at 50. Yes... that is my story and I'm sticking to it.

  12. Why don't you just rip my heart out of my chest and stomp on it a few more times? My lord was this gutwrenching and poignant!

    I felt like if I was even half as talented as you - I could've written these exact words myself.

  13. @Lindsay... I must say that I'm both pleased that I connected, and heartbroken that you feel that way too. And I appreciate the cheers. I will send your honorary Mobi pom-poms right over. :)

  14. I hear you. Waiting for real life to begin as it is ebbing and flowing and storming all around us.

    Great, heartfelt post!

  15. @terresa- my life is all about the ebbing and flowing. And yet I insist on fighting the tide.

  16. When I feel that way I have my hot wife come down and I bang her on my corporate desk.

    Or I jerk it.

  17. @DDJesus... You just like being able to say "hot wife". I have visions of the CSI guys with those sperm lights in your office saying "JESUS... dirty dirty Jesus..."

  18. excuse me now for a long winded comment, but i think it's a good one...

    i was a friend and care-giver to an elderly lady who had been living independently until she lost a leg to diabetes and needed someone to help her out til she got used her new leg. she came for dinner at my parents' house one night, and around the dining room table we had my 18 year old cousin, my sister in her 20s, me in my 30s, my mom in her 50s, and my friend in her 80s... somehow we got on the topic of age and when asked, she told us she loved being 20 because she felt free and independent, she loved being 30 because she was in love and enjoying raising her children, she loved being 40 because the children were a little more independent and she could do more of the things she enjoyed, she loved being 50 because the kids were all out of the house and turning into wonderful independent people that she was proud of, she loved being 60 because she had the time and money to travel, but her favourite age of all was when she was 70... because she was still healthy and active and everyone she met thought she was amazing because she was still traveling and hiking and living life to the fullest.
    80 was her least favourite, because that was about when her body started to let her down.

    so, there it is people... 70 is the decade we're all waiting for!!!

  19. What a gorgeous heart string pulling blog.

  20. I spent 16years living someone elses real life...Thanks God I got over that!
    Im broke but Im happy! I also get eff that ship, Im waiting on the bus baby!

  21. I love this post. It hit my heart hard...and made me wonder what I can do to make my real life begin. But, of course, this is my real life, such that it is. Lots of hard knocks, but maybe walking (I walk slowly and my breathing is labored) will gradually bring the change I need so desperately. Small, timid steps. Tiny measures of change. And hope, despite my current cirmumstances.

    Thank you for the blog. Of all that I have read from you, it might be my favorite.

  22. Sometimes I wish for more but mostly I'm grateful for what I have and what is. I give thanks for my life and I am happy. My thinking is that I'm going to enjoy the life I have/had rather than miss out on it while grieving the one I never had.

    On the other hand, maybe I'm just afraid to put it all on the line and chase the dreams.

    But I'm so happy I believe I'm living my dream.

    But maybe I'm fooling myself.

    I don't think so.

    Good luck on your real life beginning soon!