Back in my last one year, 2007, I jotted down this little note to myself: “it’s fashionable to hate our place of origin sometimes…as a way of individuation. But I’ll confess, even the worst of homes, much maligned, can simultaneously exist as a peculiar place of solace.”
I wrote regularly about how much I dreamed of quitting my workplace but that by virtue of my habituation there, it had become where I was used to, where I would go when I got into my car unthinking, where I did my best writing, where on some level I had crafted a deep relationship to my creative self, a retreat from the unpleasantries of my life. Surprisingly, my workplace, the site of my own psychodrama was also a twisted key in my artistic life.
And why not? I had been there for almost two decades. I knew everyone and they knew me. While I was over the moon with the chance to break free by retiring early, recreating that same level of refuge has been perplexing because I mistakenly thought I didn’t need a sanctuary anymore. Wasn’t my entire home my haven now? Didn’t anything other than going to my old workplace constitute a life of sanity and calm? As it turned out, no, not really.
When change happens, even good change, the best of us try to adapt to new awarenesses, try to move with the flow of recognition. But after the hubbub settles, we still may not really be reconciled to the new order, even if the new normal is better. There still may be work to do to create and/or accept our revised mission. And that work involves giving ourselves the freedom, the permission to continue on the journey…to sort and cast things out…purging as we go.
Funny thing…and I’m not the first one to say this…sometimes endings and beginnings look a lot alike and that’s what October is…a topsy-turvey combination of resolutions and inceptions. May October find you closing and opening doors like a champ. If you can remember it, cast back to October 2007 for pointers.