Thursday, December 31, 2015

This is NOT Goodbye

Theme song: Rockferry

I had an existential crisis last week, the Monday before Christmas. What happened was that my roommate left home to cat sit a diabetic cat, and my children were with their father. These circumstances left me totally alone and single in my apartment, curled up with only a computer for comfort, and no means to leave the building or feed myself. I exaggerate.

Still. It was a test of my ability to stand alone on my own two feet and, though I welcomed it, things felt shaky.

That Monday, I had to meet a client in Bernal Heights, which forced me to leave my unleavable home. The weather did not look promising, but since I was already out, I decided to take a walk up Bernal Hill via the Esmeralda Street stairs. Lovely!

All droughts aside, it poured rain. The streets were all but empty. There was so much wind on the top of the hill that the rain stung my face and pelted my ears, but I trudged on admiring the beauty of it, kind of feeling like I was on the moors. It was a Jane Eyre moment.

As I looked out over a sweeping vista of my beloved city, I cried. I had that hill to myself; it was a perfect place to howl out in the open where no one could see me or hear me. I took the time to grieve my marriage, my baby, and my youth.

Above all, I feared for a future in which my children were grown and gone and my life would lack meaning. After all, having children is the best thing I have ever done. When my marriage faltered, they gave me an iron clad reason to soldier on. But what happens when I am the only soldier left standing? How, then, will I fight the good fight? And why would I bother?

After circling twice, I headed down the hill towards the Mission to catch a bus. When I got home I lit a fire, turned on the heat, made some tea, worked, ate my roommate's mortadella (God, that lady loves mortadella!), got in bed, worked, and cried some more. I cried because life is #crazybeautiful, but also because I still couldn't shake a feeling of impending emptiness. It nagged me that perhaps the best of my life was over and there was nothing I could do that would match raising the children I love so much.

I thought: I do not want to live just for me.

As the evening wore on I received a text from my roommate saying she missed me! She asked me how I was, and I told her. My roommate has four children of her own, and she said she knew what I meant, that she was worried, too. We needed, I told her, a plan.

The truth is, I'd been forming a plan for quite some time or, perhaps more accurately, it's been forming me (life being, as I'm prone to repeating, what happens when you are busy making other plans). I guess the specter of being all alone in my apartment made me forget what I was already in the process of doing. Or maybe all that questioning and crisis was a necessary off-gassing of all that's come before. Now, though, it all seems very simple and obvious.

Here it is: When my kids are grown and gone, I'm going to be an old lady traveler. I have seven years to get my writing career up and going so I can live a life of itinerant adventure. Like I said, before the existential crisis, I'd already been working towards the plan, which includes, yes, closing down this blog.

I feel sentimental about this blog in a way that I am surprised is possible. I, who in a former life scorned technology and believed that above all the internet was a shallow and soul-killing place, have felt at home on this little blogspot blog. I am, after three years, familiar with the quirks and comforts of this digital platform.

I started the blog, as you know, as an antidote to my own broken heart following the end of an important relationship. Writing these posts shored me up and gave my life meaning and purpose at time when I also feared emptiness, but for somewhat different reasons. It feels sad to shut the doors and say goodbye, but now my purpose is larger than expressing my heart ache.

The new platform is a next step towards fulfilling my desire to become a professional writer and publisher. If any of my readers are writers, I hope you'll contribute as guest bloggers. I want to create and foster the best work I can, thus contributing to a more beautiful and functional web. You'll find, on my new (www.annacolibri.com) blog, #crazybeautiful reflections on life lived as fully, courageously, and truthfully as this single working mom can live it.

And, of course, if any of you need help with digital marketing, you can reach out to me at www.colibridigitalmarketing.com, the online home of my day job as a digital marketer.

My mortadella-loving roommate, Alison Wong, will be illustrating the new #crazybeautiful blog with her gorgeous original work. If all goes well, in seven year's time, you'll find us in Tel Aviv, Casablanca, the beautiful countryside of France, or maybe even Tokyo, writing and painting, fighting the good fight until it's time to visit our grandchildren in Baton Rouge.

Friends, this is NOT goodbye. This is, please check out my larger digs and feel free to stay a while.

Existential crisis: Solved.

{photo credit: ejbSF}

There was an error in this gadget