|Where I work: the National Press Building|
I thought I was going to come out here and fall in love -- fall in love with the city, the people, the aura. Washington DC.
I haven't yet. I'm not so sure I will either.
As a dreamer and a writer, it only seemed natural to long after what most other writers do -- a romanticized shot at penned stardom in a city too big for most. A place I could write myself into belonging.
But I'm just not feeling it.
I love my job, my new friends and the sense of adventure.
I hate the city, the grime and the fast-forwarded lifestyle.
Strangely enough, I feel like a quitter, but I haven't "quit" anything. I simply don't like it. A million expectations gone with the (humid) wind.
I've always had a thing with moving "up." I need to be progressing and working my way up to the next big thing before it begins to feel I'm wasting my time and talents. And for the longest, silliest time, I've equated "up" with an eventual, hard-earned relocation to a big, "important" city.
I am so glad I came. I've been able to put together some semblance of a general direction for my life (let's not get crazy now -- I mean very, very general). I do miss home, but I'm energized, ready to work and incredibly blessed to be here. Isn't that why we do anything, after all? To find out if/why/how we do/don't like them? Seek purpose? Explore the unknown? Better ourselves?
I've been thinking about this a lot lately, as I hope has become inherently obvious to you by now. And today as I was going through the sketchbook I kept this past spring, I read something I messily jotted down per my teacher's request:
3/26/12: I see a person I didn't see 6 months ago. I'm more confident, stubborn, and often, fed up. I'm stressed out 99% of the time. I'm an over-achiever, humbled by my struggle to become an artist (insert: writer). I'm passionate about people. I hate to see struggle or discomfort. Am I in the right place? I don't believe in a wrong place. I love that I'm studying art (insert: and writing), but am often frustrated by my lack of skill. I love the challenge, though. I AM who I am am proud to be, but I've made mistakes I'm not proud of -- but proud to learn from. In 5 years, I want to be happy and thriving. Married. Maybe, just maybe, a mom. A future "Betsy" walking up to me right now would tell me that I could be putting forth more effort if I'd drop the trivial responsibilities I've burdened myself with. I want to be an example for others and need to change some habits to make that happen.I was privileged enough to read that today as an entirely different person.