Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Romantic To a Fault

Within a year I have earned a masters, swam at the lakes, moved to the big city, run a marathon, rocked some pool parties, presented at a national conference, applied to hundreds of jobs, planted a garden, painted two pictures, went to the fair, dressed up as Mrs. Potato Head, skied fresh powder in Montana, backpacked in Costa Rica, lost a dear friend, and made old friends new again. All the while I only felt inspired to write my blog twice. Two times, that’s it. How quickly creativity can leave, but how quickly it can come back again and pass once more if you’re not paying attention. So I'm taking advantage of this wonderful rainy day in the city to clear some things up.

I have relished in the heartbeat of the city, commuting by bike through the towering businesses, sipping coffee while watching canoes drift by on the inner city lakes. I mean, I am a romantic – to a fault – which is why I thought I would love the guys in skinny jeans riding fixed gears, the girls in leopard flats and fingerless gloves, the fact that chefs are more popular than NFL players, and how the sound of jazz winds itself out of the saxophone  on the street corner and into the ears of city dwellers.

But it fizzled out. Square peg, round hole. That is how I feel in a city that has really captured my heart. Something just doesn’t quite fit. Ten months after we moved into our trendy uptown apartment we are leaving for something new. No matter how I say it, it sounds trite: a new adventure, a new chapter in our life, the next leg of the journey, back in the saddle again! No matter how it’s said, our lease is up in a month, we are quitting our jobs, and will be listening to records and the sound of “ccckkkkkiiiik…!” as we rip piece after piece of packing tape, boxing up our city life.

I constantly hear, “Why don’t you just stick it out?” Stick what out? It’s hard to level with someone who would rather stay in a mediocre job with a semi-comfortable lifestyle, than risk everything to be genuinely happy. Stick it out? We have no house, no kids, no pets, no real jobs, pretty much no money. The possibilities are endless! I had someone this year tell me that I move so much because I am unhappy, that all I'm doing is searching for myself, and that I will never find happiness traveling. I’m sorry if it makes you uncomfortable, but traveling certainly brings me happiness. Dave and I are not searching for the true meaning of life, nor are we trying to “find ourselves” across the map of the world. When we are bored, we move. When we are satisfied, we try something new. Unlike many people, we are not afraid to make our lives better.

So why aren’t we sticking it out? Seeing if it gets better? I’ll throw another cliché out: Life is short. If you’re not happy, change it. We’re constantly changing and loving every single minute of it. So Minneapolis, you are beautiful and you have been good to us. So long, farewell, and until next time.