So... so, okay. That was a very, very good week in Chicago. It could not have been scripted better, right up to the moment when the plane bumped down at LaGuardia, jolting me back to reality and out of the book I was reading. I'm pleased to be back in my apartment, which aesthetically is finally starting to feel right, but I got a lot of clarity this week about what and where makes me happy, and I need a day or so to really sit down and work it all out for going forward.
It was an Extremely Packed weekend; I wound up spending intensive amounts of time somehow with about three or four people or groups each day, which sometimes turned into real whiplash and "Was that today? That was this morning, I guess." Except for the day that was entirely in the suburbs, I also walked about seven to nine miles each day, in some very worn-out shoes, so I think I've really earned these
. Gosh — I spent two days at the Art Institute, saw nearly all my favorite neighborhoods and places, ate too much very good food, hugged a lot of very dear people and (this is the unbelievably scripted part) last night, within about three hours of each other, I had cause to run into people who were just in town for a hot minute but whom I hadn't seen in forever, and the hugs were EPIC and so, so, so good. (One was my favorite-ever teacher at UChicago, a TA for a Shakespeare class who has been one of my biggest champions since graduating; it's been quite a while in person. I was floating on that encounter for hours
. The other was a guy I'd met through improv who'd just this weekend come back from four months performing on a cruise ship with Second City. I spotted him through an open door as he was waiting to walk on during a reading.)
It was lilac season, of course. The air smelled amazing every day and each night. The sky was clear and mostly cloudless, that mild, delicate perfect springtime. It all really could not have been scripted better, right down to the rainy mug that is New York right now. I had some very good conversations with family members and friends alike; one big thing that I realized about my job hunt is that I haven't been looking for what's the best fit for me, I've been looking for whatever's most prestigious, and for one reason only: revenge. As Inigo Montoya will tell you, that's not really a sustainable way of thinking. More and more thoughts ongoing about how to live my life actually for me, rather than proving someone(s) wrong or trying to make other people happy/proud.
Biggest decision: I'm going to spend the rest of this year making a real go of it at freelancing and job-hunting. I'm challenging myself to earn certain progressive amounts through writing. By focusing on that, I'll have more luck finding a job that's a good fit, as well as giving me more guilt-free time to actually work on things like comics and novels and photography and social things. If I'm not satisfied with my life in Brooklyn by the end of the year, with my lease up in January, I'm moving back to Chicago. I even bought a ring
as an ongoing visual promise to myself. As my friend Clancy (who is doing freelance videography in Cincinnati and Actually Doing It, despite all her doubts!) told me on Monday, right now, with where we're actually at in our lives (ha!), the fall is not that far.
So yeah, that was a very good trip. Much-needed, and done very right.