Saturday, June 24, 2006

Not Yet Gone

Yesterday marked one week until I leave. This gives me heavy boots.*

Tonight is my good-bye party.

I don't think I am mentally or emotionally prepared to say good-bye to all the people attending. This week has been a series of good-byes and while I am comforted by the fact that many of my friendships will endure the distance, I also know that nothing will ever be the same. Sure, it might be better. Sure, it will definitely be different. Still, I feel the need to mourn the passing of how things were.

The frequent breakfasts with Reets. The monthly book group gatherings. The summer drives and sing-alongs with Jen Jen. Working with an amazing and resilient group of people. Lunch with co-workers, laughing our asses off. Impromptu froyo outings. The ease at which I could visit my mom only 45 minutes away. The way I could call and within minutes, my friends could arrive at my house because we all live within walking distance of each other. Hanging out on Friday nights with Mike and Meagan and Dumpling- getting sushi, watching What Not to Wear and the "fat kid show" (as we call it) and just talking and laughing. Waking up to hear the jingle of Angelou's collar and the patter of her puppy feet in the hall. The fog that blankets this town in the early morning hours. The smell of the ocean. The screams of the roller coaster riders from the Boardwalk. Walking down Pacific Avenue and saying hi to people I know.

These are some of the things I will miss.

I am shedding this life for a new one. I know that among all this loss I am also gaining. I know that. And yet. My excitement for my new start is overshadowed by my sorrow. I know this feeling will pass. Is it odd to experience anticipatory sadness about a future time when you will no longer feel sad? Even though you are tired of the sadness? For me, it is sort of like when someone dies. After they go, you worry if you can hold their memory, as if forgetting the way they smelled or the gold flints in their eyes or the sound of their voice after crying makes the love you shared less real. It doesn't but the worry is damaging to your spirit.

I am trying so hard to steadfastly BE in these moments of good-bye because it is important to me. Because this town and these people are a huge part of who I am. Because I get how much I will miss them even though I am not yet gone.

*"Heavy boots" is a frequently used saying by a great character in a wonderful book. That's what he says when things make him sad or depress him. I highly recommend reading Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer. Then read Nicole Krauss's book The History of Love. (Nicole and Jonathan are married and two of the best writers I have read in a long while.)

**Image designed for the party evite by the ever-fabulous Kristen with accents by the party host, my dear Dumpling.


Jenny said...

words from my heart:

proud. brave. beautiful. excitement. treasure. hugs. sweetness. adventure. growth. big love. proud.

blessed be, miss s.

Nihilistic said...

Those are some awesome invitations! I love the photo of you!

amy said...

have fun at the party :)

JustRun said...

I think we add new layers all the time but maybe never completely lose the old ones. I can't imagine adding a layer like the one you are and I think you're handling it with grace. And just the right amount of "oh my god, what the hell is going on?" :-)

Love the invite art! Enjoy yourself!

Anthony S. said...

That is a gorgeous picture; you look lovely.

Well, it looks like you're leaving California and the rest of us, but that's ok; better opportunities await you. You apparently are a warm reception that people will follow no matter where you end up.

So, from one fellow Californian to another, I say, "Dude?"

ocg said...

God you write beautifully.

I love you dear Sizz, and wish I could be there to celebrate your evolution to the ext phase of your life.



ocg said...

ext = next

(god I should proofread more...)

Lizzie said...

This post made me feel like I'm going to miss Santa Cruz and I've never even been there. I know it's hard leaving but good things are definitely in store for you!

(I finished Extremely Loud... a week or so ago (on your recommendation!) and loved it. Funny, before I left I went to Barnes & Noble and was trying to decide between that and The History of love (it's one of those I've picked up and almost bought a thousand times). I had no idea they were married. Thanks for yet another recommendation - I'll definitely read it now!)

kapgar said...

The thing, though, is that this is you we're talking about. You won't be without friends in Seattle. And you'll never lose your old ones. It's just a different and new experience. That's what you have to keep telling yourself.

Brad said...

I think it's good to be in the moment of good-bye for a little while. Everyone has a different take on it, but I agree with you. I know how much I'll miss them, even if they don't. Soak up these moments. :)