Waiting for My Real Life to Begin

The life and times of a girl named Swishy.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Freaking out a little

(Mildly serious, "I'm in the throes of an existential crisis" post to follow.)

All right. So you remember all the drama of this and this, otherwise known as "Swishy blows up her life in an idealistic but hopefully not ill-fated quest for something more." I have been feeling pretty guilty I haven't written more about it the past couple of months. The reason is, while it's been empowering and proactive and all that great stuff, it's also been much, MUCH harder than I thought it would be and sometimes it's hard for me to talk about or explain. There have been some days where I've been completely good and a lot of days where I've cried and cried. It's less about not having opportunities and more about having too many, maybe. And it's definitely about me and my personality and how absolutely, gut-wrenchingly hard it is for me to let go of things, including the "perfect" scenarios I have in my head. I'm probably one of the most sensitive people I know, definitely the most sentimental, and ughhhh I swear I make things harder on myself sometimes because of it.

Anyway. I have been spending some time writing, which in some ways was sort of the whole point of this little adventure, and it's been challenging but rewarding and hopefully will become even more rewarding someday. I also have been looking for a new job, and I got a very good offer a couple of days ago. It's with a very large media company (and when I say very large, I mean VERY, as in every single one of you has heard of it). It's a good company, it's good financially, total job security, nice people, lots of room and encouragement to move up and grow. Which is all big, especially in this economy. Buuuut (there's always a but, isn't there?) ... it's not quite the perfect job (it's a little more money but a little less responsibility than I'm used to) and it's not quite the perfect location (a thousand miles away, in a city that feels TOTALLY random to me). I can make them both OK in my head ... a little less responsibility gives me a little more time to work on other long-term stuff I want to do, and I get into a massive company that promises I'll be able to move around, one that has massive sister companies I also could work for someday. The location itself isn't perfect, but it's close to a lot of places that ARE good, and it's not necessarily permanent. And blah blah blah.

The point is, even though it's a great opportunity and I'm very grateful to have it, it's another leap. And I sort of knew that quitting my job wasn't the only leap I was going to have to make, but ohhh, I HATE leaping. HATE IT!

I love my friends. I love my apartment. I love my cute little coffee shop. I love where I work out. I love that finally, FINALLY, I can drive in all directions and not get lost. When I moved here, I had been here once in my life (on my 24-hour interview, most of which was spent either at the airport or the office) and did not know one single solitary person in the whole city. I was young and STUPID and it was all a little bit of a nightmare, at least for the first year or so. It is HARD to move somewhere by yourself, especially to a place where you don't know anybody. I sort of think everyone should do it once, because it really does "build character" or whatever dumb cliche you want to use, but it is definitely not in the "fun" column of things to do in your lifetime.

But then I'm like, OK, I learned from the last time, it doesn't have to be like that again. I totally went on all those stupid websites that list book clubs and restaurant clubs and cooking clubs, and I swear to you I'd go to every single one of them and make you read about every single socially inept person there. I'd take my sewing machine out of the box and finally learn how to make potholders. I'd knit a scarf, and work out all the time, and watch every single new show on TV. And, you know, go to work occasionally. So ... it'd be OK, right?

But it's not the same. And the same is what drove me crazy sometimes, but the same can also be sort of nice, especially when you're scared to death of change and of doing the wrong thing.

I sound schizophrenic, don't I? I feel a little schizophrenic. Anyway, don't get me wrong, it's very exciting, but you know, it's stressful. Then again, I feel like the last decade of my life has been stressful, so maybe that is just life as a grown-up.

You have to promise me one thing, though. I promise I won't pull any disappearing acts when I'm stressed if you promise you'll be patient while I drag my angsty little self through the next few months. I will try to be funny and positive, I promise, but no matter what, I will totally totally totally need you guys. Otherwise I might, like, accost the guy in the coffee shop with hugs and tears and, really, I don't need to add a mental hospital or jail stay to the mix right now. I've got to save SOMETHING for '09, right?

33 Comments:

At 8:07 AM, Blogger Barb said...

I may not be able to speak for everyone but I'll be right here.. patiently waiting to hear about your new adventures. I, too, have moved several times to a place where I know no one. It takes time but I have made some amazing friends that have turned into family. You never know where you'll find love (love of all kinds!) Best wishes to you.

 
At 10:23 AM, Blogger CelticBuffy said...

Wish I had some great advice to give but I don't. Less responsibility can be a good thing, it's one of the reasons I decided to go back to being a server for a while. Moving can be great too. I do know how hard it is though, having just moved to a new city where the only people I know are people I don't want to be around. haha
Go with your gut, that's all I can say.

 
At 10:27 AM, Blogger Irene said...

Is it absolutely necessary that you move? I mean, if you are happy with so many things in your life now, why toss all of that out of the window? Are you corporate ladder climbing? Think about your emotional well being and your comfort levels and your quality of life. Of course, I don't know the whole story, but I'm just saying...peace of mind counts for a lot too.

 
At 10:40 AM, Blogger ballerinatoes said...

I'm in a similar spot...except I quit my job last spring because I was about to lose my marbles, after I quit, I lost my marbles, and now, 6 months and daily anti-depressants later, I am finally ready to do something. I'm doing a little contract work and have a few clients, and I would love to have my own practice and do my own thing. But, I am anxious because I miss the security of that for sure paycheck and health benefits. Go with you gut. If you are happy where you are at, stay.

 
At 12:17 PM, Blogger Tuesday Girl said...

I know EXACTLY what you are talking about.
I am going to move to a place where I know very few people. Again.

I hate the change, but it is slightly exciting. I decided I am going to reinvent myself.

 
At 12:24 PM, Blogger Kristabella said...

It is hard to move to a place where you know no one. I did it in college and then right after. It still is, all these years later, one of the hardest things I have ever done. I cried. A LOT.

Whatever you choose, it will be the right decision! Go with your gut. Everything happens for a reason!

Hang in there kiddo!

 
At 12:41 PM, Blogger kk said...

There's a lot to be said about waking up every morning and being happy about where you are, both physically and emotionally.

I've left places I've loved for various reasons, but never to a new city where I didn't know anyone. I think it's okay to leave a place you're happy and that you love, if you are planning on going to a new place with opportunities and the chance to love it there, too.

Good luck – keep us posted!

 
At 1:00 PM, Blogger Vanessa said...

I have moved several times to new cities, by myself. Yes it's hard. Very hard. I also know every time I did it, I learned something about myself and about the world. This may or may not be right advice for you, but hopefully soon your answer will become clear.

 
At 2:22 PM, Blogger Melek said...

i've never moved to a place where i knew no one (except college) and i've never lived in a big city...so i can't relate. altho, i know NEW can oftentimes be totally overwhelming.

but just think of the possiblities! you could totally redo the way you dress, the way you act, you could take on a british accent if you wanted. nobody would know bc you'd be the 'new mysterious girl' :) You could eat your snickers bar with a fork and knife and just write it off as "that's how we do it where i'm from".... have fun with it :)

 
At 2:24 PM, Blogger shopgirl said...

Oh Swishy - how I wish (sort of) that I was in your position - I would LOVE (sort of) to move to another city and "start over." BUT - yes, there is ALWAYS A BUT, I would MISS MISS MISS my friends and family. My BFF almost had to move this past year - and I was SAD SAD SAD at the thought of it - to the point that I told her and her hubby they'd have to get an "inlaw suite" b/c I was coming with them.

I too, wish I had some advice for you - but I don't - hang in there sister - your answer will come. We'll be here for you!

 
At 4:51 PM, Blogger Elle Charlie said...

Oh, man, I have been there. I know how exciting moving can be, and how much it can totally suck to transition! I will be here to listen. I'm great at commiserating with angst, having quite a bit of that brewing myself from time to time. Whatever you choose, it will end up working out. A transition is always temporary. Which is the plus side. Is this new place a more exciting place than your current place? Would you rather live there in the long run?

 
At 5:22 PM, Blogger Crazed said...

I am totally buzzy about your new opportunity! REALLY! It will be fabulous.

 
At 7:17 PM, Blogger michelle said...

i'm looking forward to what's next for you ... i think that all change brings about some amount of angst, but it seems like this opportunity is an exciting one. i envy you, as i would love to move somewhere new and start fresh ... i might live vicariously, just a little. :)

 
At 8:28 PM, Blogger Michelle said...

Methinks you need to consult your Magic 8 ball ;)

I'm all about making a decision and moving on with it, regardless of whether or not it's the right one. You need to do the right thing by you, and you'll know what that is, won't you? Even if it takes some time to get there, you know you have that luxury, so stake it!

Good luck, and yes, I'll add myself to the legions of patient people.

 
At 9:20 PM, Blogger Trish Ryan said...

I've moved so many times that THAT DOG finds something to pee on the minute she sees dishes go into a box. I feel your pain.

It's different, though, when you're going toward something cool. Which you are. Think stepping stone. Think, "on my way..."

You're gonna love it, and it will love you. Count on it.

 
At 10:57 PM, Blogger Manic Mom said...

MY SWISHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

YOU ARE GOING TO BE AMAZINGLY FINE MY BBFF!!! EVERYONE SAYS PEOPLE NEED CHANGE!!! EVEN SWISHY PREDICTED NEWNESS AND YOU WILL PREVAIL!!! EVENTUALLY SOMEDAY PATHS NEED TO CROSS AND OURS WILL AGAIN AND AGAIN!!! BECAUSE YOU KNOW WHERE MY SISTER LIVES, AND WE HAVE MUTUAL FRIENDS THERE TOO YOU KNOW!!!!

 
At 1:29 AM, Blogger Swishy said...

YOU GUYS! You are all so awesome. Thank you so, so much. Like, seriously, SO much. I am such a worrier ... it helps a ton to have all of your support. A big hug to all of you. THANK YOU! :)

 
At 5:32 AM, Blogger Monnik said...

I wouldn't miss your adventures for anything!!!

Like my pal Dory from Finding Nemo says: "Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming."

 
At 9:21 AM, Blogger Jenster said...

Making such decisions is always so hard! And I can't imagine moving to a new city alone. I've moved half way across the country twice, but it wasn't alone. And that was scary enough!

I do know that whatever you do you'll do it the Swishy way and it will be perfect!

I'm so coming along for the ride!

 
At 1:06 PM, Blogger Angela Williams Duea said...

I totally understand your fear of leaping. And this sounds like a big one. Obviously you know change is a risk, but so is staying where you are. I also know you know that anything is going to have pros and cons.

All I can do is ask...what do you want? REALLY want? Do you need a new job to do all the things you just listed?

I will be praying for you and hope your stress level subsides a little. I can't wait to hear where your adventures lead you!

 
At 2:37 PM, Blogger TTQ said...

You have us where ever you go. I'll even e-mail you my IM name as I stay up all hours of the night and my puter stays on non stop.
I'm good with crisis's, unless of course I happen to be having one then we would both be a mess.

 
At 10:17 PM, Blogger Mary Ann said...

Wow, I think that's fabulous. I was hoping you'd get the offer because there's nothing quite so nice as having a choice. And nothing quite so awful.

One suggestion, if you're still wondering if the city is right for you: go there, spend a week, check the place out, see how it feels. They probably have a coffee shop with a guy in it...and if there isn't a guy in it yet, there will be soon after you walk in. :))

 
At 10:55 PM, Blogger kim said...

If you lived closer I would make you move on to stealth video.

I could come up with assignments for you, so you could get out of yourself and not have to be alone driving yourself mental with all that open road in front of you.

Think of all the times you wound up with a favorite moment that never would have happened if you hadn't been willing to take the crappy part that is the leap. Think ahead to all the favorite you moments you are creating right now and you don't even know it -- you're in a Christmas Eve limbo of sorts...

Okay, I'd better go before I start quoting Tom Petty at you...but waiting really is the hardest part.

 
At 12:22 AM, Anonymous dimples said...

swisher sweets,
you will do great! you have your stuff down and you know it. look forward to some new stuff happening, and you always know all your friends will be there for you when times get tough, so you will do well, of course!

 
At 12:34 AM, Blogger Eileen said...

We got your back babe. You let us know what you need and we'll be there for you.

 
At 1:20 AM, Blogger Eileen said...

There is nothing wrong with staying in a place that feels like home, feels good and your heart tell you where it is you belong. Listen to your gut sweetie, it is always right.

It is great you were offered this job, sounds wonderful, but it may not be so wonderful for you. That is okay.

Whatever you decide, be kind to yourself. Don't be too hard on yourself or think too much. Just spend time with the ones you love and who make you smile.

XXXXX

 
At 3:25 PM, Blogger Bina said...

Oh Swish. I wish I could help. I really do. While I was reading this I was thinking "Oh, to be young again and HAVE to move to a new city, a new job, where no one knows me! How GREAT would THAT be!"

But unfortunately the only leap I ever took was joining the Army, which in reality was the BEST leap I ever took cause it has lead me to where I am today. But I've never minded change. I LOVE change. If things DON'T change, I tend to get depressed.

Anyway, I WISH you could tell us the name of this big company, and the city, but I know that is SO not like you, so I won't ask. I just things work out for you, and I have NO doubt they will, cause they seem to ALWAYS work out, but you just haven't realized that yet.

 
At 3:31 PM, Blogger Golightly said...

Girrrl - I hear you loud and clear. You will end up doing what is best for you and it'll be the right decision - its the process that sucks, I know. You can do it. I cannot wait to hear all about it.

 
At 5:58 PM, Blogger dragonfly said...

Moving is always so hard, especially when it's pretty far and you don't know anyone but it really sounds like a good deal, too! Of course, you could always look at it this way.... think of all the new coffee shop spies you could find to take pictures of! *grin*

p.s. thanks for the comment last week. That was a nice surprise!

 
At 11:20 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

I'm a huge worry wart too. I feel your pain. Like everyone is saying, just listen to your heart. Write a list of pro's / con's. You will make the best decision for yourself.

 
At 3:09 AM, Blogger Swishy said...

Every single comment helps SO much. Thank you! I am totally going to take you all up on the assignments, and the IMing, and the helpful tips on how to fake a British accent ... :)

Seriously, you guys are helping so much. Thank you so very much ... you have no idea how much it means and how much I appreciate it. You are the BEST.

 
At 3:12 AM, Blogger Swishy said...

P.S. I can't post some of the details, but if you email me, I'll tell you what and where.

:)

 
At 8:28 AM, Blogger Mary Ann said...

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