Tuesday, August 29, 2017


"This wasn't how this year was supposed to go."

I don't know exactly how many times I've said that in recent history, but do me a favor. Keep going and read that sentence again with my intended tone. It's not a whine -- it's a slightly bewildered but hopeful phrase, as though what became reality might actually be an improvement on what was expected.

"This wasn't how this year was supposed to go."

I've had a lot of catch-up conversations in recent history that have started with, "So have you moved yet?" Each time I get to back up in the year and fill whoever it is in on exactly how the last few months have progressed, and each time I'm a little more baffled. Yes, I'm still on hold (as far as I know). Yes, I'm looking for other jobs in the meantime. No, my patience isn't infinite.

No, I don't actually mind staying in Rapid City. In fact, the summer has been quite fun.

This wasn't how this year was supposed to go -- I was supposed to have moved to a new city in a new state and started a new job by now. I was supposed to be spending my 9-5 hours at a desk and my other hours finding a social life. I was supposed to be trying to find weekends to come up to Rapid and visit while Mia Sorella and Jay were here, and balancing a new gig with time off to make it to a big family wedding.

"Supposed to."

Instead, I've been finding myself curiously afloat -- living in a basement, sure, but picking up odd jobs here and there and getting creatively frugal at times. I've been cooking and baking with increased frequency. And I haven't had to miss anything -- a camping trip with my brother, an entire month with my sister, a family wedding that turned into an extended weekend. Oh, and the eclipse.

While it took some time to get to the point of peace (April was a rough month) and I'm not a big fan of The Great Unknown that I've been perpetually peering into, it has managed to be a pretty good year. Even better, I've been able to find some new structure.

Now, I'll spend a day each week surfing job sites and filling out applications. A couple days working through classes on Coursera. At least one day hiking (usually). Here and there, a day or two with one of those odd jobs. And there are evenings for dinner and beverages, concerts and random road trips.

So yes. It's not been what I expected.

Not even a little.

And yes, I find myself speculating about what it could have been.

But for the moment? I don't think I'd trade it.

That's about the best I could hope for, I think.

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