I Went Home For A Month And Here’s What Else Happened

Last week I penned a piece reflecting on some of the things that happened when I went back to my hometown for a month. Well, despite the long winded ness of that post there are some other things that happened during my sabbatical in the homeland that missed the original article.

I Found Some Blessings: I’ve tried not to let everything weigh on me and make me lash out at those around me, but truthfully I’ve been basically numb for the past eight months. I haven’t honestly felt genuinely, wholesomely happy over anything that’s happened, and have found myself fighting the cycle of self-pity much more than I should. But as I was cleaning the house I discovered some mementos that reminded me of the immeasurable amount of love I did receive in the past twenty-eight years. I also connected differently with the people still in my life, realized the newness of our relationships isn’t necessarily something to scorn, and that if I’ll let it beauty and happiness will find a way to reach me, even if it’s not the ways I knew before.

I Learned Just How Big My Mom Was: While home I drove to the burger stand my mom took her oldest sister to every Saturday, and very awkwardly asked the clerk if she remembered a woman fitting my mom’s description. Immediately the woman’s face clouded, and as I watched as tears gathered in her eyes at the mere mention of my mom. My whole life I’ve looked at my mom as just that, my mom. But she was so much more, and her presence in the lives of so many is something I wish I’d tried to discover sooner.

I Got Some Closure: I didn’t get a lot. I certainly didn’t get as much as I’d imagined I would. But I did get some. Going back and confronting the reality of everything, and doing it piecemeal helped to ease myself into my new life, to both accept the truths of the world I’m in and try to find my place in it as well. I’m still looking for things, sometimes it’s her, sometimes it’s peace over everything, and sometimes it’s any kind of distraction from the sadness of the real world. But I did get some closure, and that’s more progress than I’ve made in the last eight months.

I Found An Island To Swim To: Since everything happened I’ve been feeling like a castaway treading water. I don’t know where to go, I don’t know if the path I take is going to save or kill me, and I’m far too focused on keeping myself alive by the minute to focus on finding a way to improve my situation. But, out of really nothing more than the force of necessity, I spotted an island. From the moment I came to terms with the financial insufficiency of my job I feel like I’ve at least known there’s an island to swim to, though at times it feels like the waves are too high to see it, or the island may be just a mirage. But if nothing else I’ve got hope, and it’s nice to have hope for a change.

I Got Some Peace: I wish I had done more to really breathe and slow down while I was home, because I didn’t realize how fast paced, overwhelmed, and overstimulated I’d been living until I laid in bed in a silent house with nothing but the dog. I hadn’t, and still probably aren’t, giving myself the ability to deal with everything. The last month was helpful, it gave a second to look around and see where I really want to putting effort. But I could use some more. Now that I’m back in Austin I need to take that peace I found and let it synergies me so I can translate all these aspirations into productivity.

I’m still leaving things out, like the time spent with my best friend’s daughter, which showed me there’s still life in this world, pure, wonderful life deserving of our love and attention. Or the conversations with my closest cousin, which made me evaluate my professional and personal ambitions and desires, which I think will help me make better decisions in the coming year. Or finding all the cool stuff both in the house and around town as I drove my girlfriend around the two weekends she visited. As with everything my month home brought highs and lows, things to forget and things to cherish, to want to have again. It’s something I think I’ll ultimately be grateful for, and maybe even something I’ll wish I could have more of again.

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