Friday, September 3, 2010
Imitation of Life
Lately I feel like I am leading two lives. There is my public life, which sounds really good on paper, Facebook or during short phone conversations with family members. I made this big move to San Diego, I have weathered the difficult beginnings here at this house, I am semi-retired, hanging out at the beach a few afternoons a week, going to yoga three days a week, getting the boys involved here in our new community, and making time to write. Wow, now I am impressed with myself.
While all those things are true, the reality is that being in early retirement just means that I have been unemployed for a couple of months. I'm not drawing on my retirement, so I don't have any extra money coming in. In fact, I have no money coming in, and way to much going out. I have my home in San Francisco, that is still on the market without one single offer. And while from a distance it may appear that I am out really enjoying life to it's fullest, the majority of the time I am just up here in my bedroom, writing, or staring out the window.
I tell you, I wouldn't change any of the choices I have made for an instance. Yes, I walked away from a very well paid job, and will now begin one that pays half of what I used to make, but I don't really care. My focus in not on being as financially well off, or stable, as I used to be. In fact, there is no way I can be. I have spent the past three years with Michael and I not really working our full schedules, and making a lot less than our salaries would suggest. I made that transition from two salaries to one a long time ago. Now I have gone from one salary to none, and thanks to Michael, have had a cushion for this transition. But none of this is the flip side to my life.
The other life that I am referring to is the one that I share with all of you. This life here on my blog, and through our communication, is far more satisfying, and more real than the rest. Is that sad? I'm not really sure.
What I am talking about is the side to grief that most people either don't realize is there, or don't bring up with me. It's funny, I moved here partly to be closer to my family, but I don't think they see, or I show them, anything different than when I lived 400 miles away. And it's not like I see them, or friends, very often, but maybe this is just how things are, and it's more about me getting used to it.
This chasm that has developed in my life is actually okay for the most part. Given the circumstances of my life, I do like it. I am happy with the choices I am making, and feel good about the direction it is going, even when it feels like it isn't going anywhere. It's just that I am going through a lot.
This whole blogging thing is kind of strange. I never really know who is reading it. Well, I know those who comment, but other than them I don't. I also know that there is an ever increasing number of people who visit my blog each day, so I never feel completely alone. It's quite a blessing. Yet with family and friends around here, where ever 'here' happens to be, I really have no idea who knows what.
My life is an open book, which you have to open to read. I don't really expect everyone to read it everyday, or to even keep up with it. But I tell you, I have been tempted to throw in some completely outrageous things just to see if anyone around here is in the loop. Up till now I have made the art of my writing imitate my life. But wouldn't it be great if we could make our life imitate art? I could create a whole new world here on the page, then let my life follow suit.
Maybe that is what I am doing.
Posted by Dan at 10:18 PM