Then why the hell are you so sad?
That is today question. Leaving Dayton was extremely hard, not because I didn't want to be done, but because I was done. A chapter is now closed. Certain hard truths came to light that challenged me, and will continue to, in my last days there.
I have been in California since Tuesday, staying with Glamour Gal and her amazing beau. Since then I have shopped, gossiped, worked, and began to tell those hard truths. Yesterday I went to see my dear friends from graduate school since my visit fortuitously coincided with the residential conference. It has been two years since I saw them, at which time I was on the brink of moving to Ohio, and now I have left there. I cannot begin to tell you how amazing it was to see Sandra, Scott, Jennifer, Priscilla, John, Steven. A total unexpected treat to catch a few minutes with Annette and Jheri. My heart is full from spending time, some brief, some in depth with these people that have touched my life deeply. In many ways it was the same sort of experience as when I was a student, in other ways not, since it seemed overall a more subdued RC. Also it was not the same as I was now single, and I was telling hard truths about me, my relationship, my vague plans for finishing my degree, all of those things that I have been sitting with the last few months.
This morning I caught CalTrans down to San Jose to see more friends, these from my time of living out here. More bitter words spilled from my lips, which were parched from telling such sadness, hurt and anger; afraid of breaking other people's hearts just a bit in the process. Mostly though it was good, fabulous even to reconnect with these people. The occasion was Zaye's fifth birthday, hard to believe he is so big, so perfect still. It was wonderful to see his mamas and reassure myself that though contact had been limited, the affection and love has not faded as I had feared. Andrea & Liz's daughter Val is amazing, such an unusual beauty. The big surprise for me was seeing Wendy; we have always connected solidly, in a mildly flirtitous way and though she is happily coupled it was still fun to do just a little of that dance together.
Glamour Gal, Amazing Beau and I drove back to Berkeley in the Saab convertible with the top down as the dusk settled in, wind whipping my hair every which way and I was taken with unbelievable sadness. Sheryl Crow played for awhile and the title lyric hit me particularly hard because I am so happy, leaving was the right choice on so many levels and yet after these two days of reverie I am incredibly sadden by the very things that have brought me here, where I am happy. The truths that have been laid bare have made me incredibly sad, challenged me, left me feeling betrayal in a manner I have never felt before, and today in the car along with blocked tears I started to feel anger. A deep heart changing anger, a knowledge that I have lost an innocence I once had, a trust that I imbued happily on everyone, a willing suspension of disbelief that can not exist inside me anymore. Perhaps that is what is making me so angry and sad right now, because juxtiposed right up against my deep hurt is the Glamour Gal and Amazing Beau being so happy, so lovingly, all the things that I had hoped for, that I had pinned a future on in my last relationship. The two times I have taken a total leap of faith in love, ignored warning signs, fell in love in that way I don't believe in, I was left in a heap, crumbled and broken. My cyncism has done nothing but grow and that feels impossibly sad to me tonight.
I am sure some of my positivism and trust in people will return, at least I hope it does, but for tonight I am angry, sad, and feeling a little lost; longing for an alone space to curl up into and sleep endlessly, to snivel to myself, and to just be in my misery until I am ready to interact with people, to retreat to again and again. I do not have that right now. The closest I will get to such a thing is in a few more days, in a tent in the Sierra Nevada foothills, in between working and socializing. It is foolish to hope that my experience last year will repeat itself because moments like that are the ephianies that keep us going, and frankly I have had a few in unusual places of late so the best I can hope for in that desert climate is some sweet interactions, satisfying work, and just a few soul opening dance experiences. I'm not greedy. Well mostly not. So if I get just one or two of those things, it will be enough. Oh, and some good sleep would be nice too.