Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Miami; the what's where's and why's of a journey's start.


It’s Monday.  Just about noon and we’re #2 for take off.  I’m afraid.  I guess that’s the point of this trip.  I do things like this.  Take trips or do other things that frighten me.  (And there aren’t very many things that do frighten me.)  When I find something, it’s becoming an increasing habit to do those things, on purpose.  I’m not afraid to fly.  That’s never been my issue.  I love flying.  I love heights.  And there is no where I sleep better than up in the sky.

The plane is racing now, and take off.

So, what is it that I’m afraid of?  What about this trip am I afraid of?  I suppose it’s the finding my way around on my own.  I’ve never rented a car by myself.  Never checked in to a hotel completely alone or taken a shuttle from an airport without someone to greet me on the other side.  I don’t know where I’m going or what I’m doing, and that’s the point.  Confronting fear of the unknown.  Will I have enough money to do everything I want once there?  Maybe.  Will I get lost?  Likely.  These are not the kinds of things that I had role models to teach me.  I just fake it til I make it most times.  With the exception of when my Grandfather was around, I’ve been fairly forced to be self sufficient in life.  Take care of myself and often times others.  This is how I’ve come to expect life.  This is how I’ve come to be comfortable.  This is how I prefer things.

When I was a child, I liked to share toys.  Except for a few of them.  A select few treasures that I didn’t want touched.  Not because I didn’t want friends to have fun.  But because they were fragile.  And if I broke them, I could only be mad at myself.  But I was horrified of the possibility of being angry with a friend for breaking one of my treasures.  (Gizmo, was off limits to all.)  But this philosophy has creeped into other aspects.  If I let myself down, or break the trust I have in myself, I can only be mad at myself.  But if I trust you…  I have to put myself to the test at times.  I have to prove to myself that I can still rely on me.  That I can do anything I put my mind to.  Because I always need to know I have that back up plan.  Then, I don’t have to be so worried about the chance that someone else is going to let me down.  I still have me.

I suppose that’s where I’m at right now. 

I’m afraid.  I’m afraid of something else, besides this trip.  I’m afraid of trusting another person.  I’m afraid that I’m going to come to rely on someone for emotional fulfillment.  I’m afraid, that I may be in love with someone.  I’m not going to say who just yet as it has very little to do with the specific person and everything to do with being afraid that some of my independence could be in jeopardy in the process.  To expose some of that weaker, softer, side of myself.  I’m not afraid of getting hurt.  I’m afraid of being in love in the first place.  And this whole problem of me being more comfortable with breaking my own toy instead of risking someone else breaking it, causes me to do really stupid stuff, like run away.  I’ll break my own heart before giving you the chance to.  Not because I’m afraid of the pain, but because I don’t want to have anyone to blame but me.  How asinine is that?

I’m trying really hard not to run for the hills.  I’m trying to stay calm and not cut ties preemptively.  I don’t actually enjoy the idea of these walls I’ve built.  But it’s my comfort zone.  I love the idea of love, but I hate the idea of coming to depend on others as an emotional support system.  The very thought can induce some pretty adverse reactions from me.  Like hopping on a plane to Miami for little to no reason.

But then, I suppose I do have good reason.  Reasons, plural actually.  The first, overstating the obvious at this point, is if I can’t conquer one fear, I will conquer another.  I will remind myself that fear is something that can be tamed.  But there’s more.  Why now?  Why Miami?

Why Not?

Take a look around you.  Do you not realize and appreciate the amazing elements of the world you live in?  A trip that would have once taken months, can now be accomplished in hours.  A woman needn’t be escorted.  So much is at our fingertips begging to be touched.  I imagined myself talking to someone from the past.  “You mean, you could go from frozen grey and dead surroundings to a tropical green and lush paradise by FLYING in the air?  Why WOULDN’T you take every chance you got?  Why wouldn’t you do something so remarkable?”

I don’t want to waste my life.  I don’t want to be sitting in a chair, turning 60, and thinking to myself, “where did the years go?  Why didn’t I do anything?  Why did I spend my free time sitting in a bed in an apartment?”  And then a few weeks ago, I made a painting.  It was a seascape, warm and sunny and clean.  And staring at the hundreds of reference pictures while putting paint to canvas, made me long for warmth and sunlight all the more.  So I started the contemplation.

Can I afford it?  No.  Do I have the time?  Absolutely not.  …Until.
And then, “you can leave now then, and take your 401k with you.”
Can I afford it?  It’s tight, but…  YES!  Do I have the time?  Remarkably SO!
Pick a direction, any direction!
And I started another round of contemplation.  Where did I have friends?  North Carolina.  Northern Florida.  New Orleans.  California.  Belize.  All warm, some more so than others.  All sunny.  Most within range to a beach.  But other factors had to come into play.  Plane tickets to Belize and California were just too far out of reach.  North Carolina, though appealing, was just not quite the tropical climate I had in mind.  And then…  did I really want to be where friends were?  I love my friends, but I feel a need to do this on my own, don’t forget.  I expanded my search to Texas and other coastal cities.  Miami came up as cheapest package every time.  And the more I looked at it, the happier I was with its possibilities.

So to those who are asking “why” I ask, why not?

Maybe I can’t explain everything I’m feeling.  I’ll keep journaling as the trip goes on and maybe some more will come to light.

I plan on going to their very unique zoo.  I plan on sitting on a beach, and find inspiration for my books.  (Two of which have chapters in this area or similar.)  And I plan on exploring coral reef.  I plan on sorting out my head and heart.  And I plan on regaining some of my “muchness.”  I feel I was once much “muchier.”

No comments:

Post a Comment