My life has not gone entirely the way I wanted it to. If I were totally frank I would say that it has actually, utterly, and totally gone entirely a way I would not have wanted it to go.
I have never been invited to a big beautiful sweeping mansion for a twilight backyard soiree.
I have never made the acquaintance with eccentric, rich, brilliant rich type folk to have expansive hedge mazes on their property guarded by large beautiful gargoyles that we frolic through at night, breathless, carrying champagne, giggling and scaring each other.
I have never been to New Zealand.
I have never lounged on a yacht.
I have never found myself in the position of being offered a fabulous job that fits all my qualifications beautifully, one where I can ride my bike to work, preferably have a window overlooking some sort of water, and be wry and smart all day, surrounded by good hardworking people that are fun to share a drink with after work (drinking, at this point, is a whole 'nother issue as it has recently been discovered that my liver is very, very bad. I did not imagine that my body would be so wholly feeble and incompetent for the task of living even as it was constantly breaking down as a child and I certainly didn't believe that entire systems, starting with the reproductive followed by the digestive and now the liver would simply give up entirely).
I imagined my life would take many courses, I imagined it would all turn out fine, somehow. But I never set my sites high. There were really only two very specific things I wanted, more than anything, for my life to have: My very own apartment with white walls and a good view, and friends. Oh god how I have wanted, struggled for, momentarily done well with, then lost, friends. The only good thing about getting older, which is not to be underestimated, is having a modicum of control over your life, or at least the illusion thereof. You couldn't pay me to even remember the unbelievable hell that was my early 20s ever again. You couldn't bribe me to experience my mid 20s ever again. And now, closing dangerously in on 30, still struggling with the exact same things as ever, all you would get from me are bittersweet tears over my late 20s.
My life has failed me, in ways small and in ways momentous, over and over and over and over and over again. I am not, I hope, bitter. I am forever hopeful. The girl in me who went to elementary school alone everyday but still somehow believed that friends would come along (and some did, for the first truly wonderful bit of my life in 4th grade and 4th grade only -- it would be six long years before I got to experience friendship and belonging again) still exists. She still always believes that things are going to get better. Even now, she stubbornly insists that even though we are up against a ledge age wise in a city we hate trapped in a job that is killing us and the love of our life just betrayed us and our health is worse than ever, that right around the corner good things await. Friends are there. Fun is there. Just hold on.
I don't know whether she is the sweetly hopeful proof of why humanity continues to exist or quite simply completely, totally, utterly deluded and insane. The best predictor of the future is the past and my past? Not great. But I'm hopeful. Like the end of Sweet Charity, I suppose I'm stuck living hopefully ever after, even though it never works out, and right now, right now: I am quite alone.
Which is, as always, okay.
And this is what I can give you because the last five months have produced nothing but misery and sharing what I wrote with you would make cerebral fuilds leak out your ear. If you had lived the last five months with me it is likely you would not have cerebral fluids left. It has been...hilariously horrible.
And I have missed you all.