August 26, 2009

more than orange juice

My mind is elsewhere these days, specifically in Connecticut. It's orientation time and I've been pretending to avoid mentions of it on Facebook because I wish I was there. I abstain from looking at pictures and seeing schedules, then horde it all at once like binging. My good friend Rachel has taken up Josh's room (the one with the direct sunlight - damn them both) and my dresser and joins the rest of my dear friends in continuing on with their lives and education without me. Not my choice or theirs, but what has happened regardless.

I don't feel like a "grass is greener" person, because I'm always really grateful for what I have and what I'm doing at that moment, but part of me always longs for the places I am not with no regard to my present location. It's happened before. It'll happen again.

When I first moved out to YDS, I had this mindset that I already had a set of great friends in Minnesota and thus, I didn't need anymore. I never expected to find the people and connections I did, which makes them all the more treasured. I wrote this during my orientation two years ago this week:
Orientation starts tomorrow, and it should be fun. When I say "fun," I mean long and possibly boring. Amy won't be there, so I have no one to make snarky and sarcastic comments to. I want to have friends so I have people to hang out with here, but it's a pain in the ass getting to know people and do the whole "I'm Lindsay, MAR in Feminist Studies, originally from Wisconsin but I went to school in Minnesota, I want to get my PhD and teach about culture, religion and feminism" 50 times in a row. It's just tiring, especially when I know that I have great friends and a great boyfriend at home. I kind of felt the same way about camp. That WAS different, because I had Andrew, Amy, Drew, KG, Anna, ect to hang out with after work - I didn't need to become best friends with everyone there because I already had best friends. Here, it's not like I can head over to chillax with Amy and Drew... it would be lonely hanging out by myself. I'm sure everyone I meet will be nice - the ones I have so far are - but it's a lot of effort.

Well, well, well, how the turn tables. Little did I know that I would live on snarky and sarcastic comments for two years.

My point is that we have expectations and often, reality is entirely different. Not that our expectations aren't met, but that we expect an orange and we end up with a palm tree. Oranges are delicious, but palm trees give shade and coconuts and wood and palm leaves. So much more than just orange juice.

I'm remembering my expectations when I went into YDS, not looking to find lifelong friends but instead people to occupy weekend nights. I'm remembering because it's my first week at my job (formally) and I'm meeting people left and right, people I'm trying not to prejudge and put into a "work" box. Let's leave open the possibility that while it's always been pretty good, my life can benefit from a few more friendly faces, if not good friends.

Life is short, I am young and a field of flowers can always find room for one more.


Rachel said...

love, love, love this post and these words and thoughts and yes. yes. correct.


Rachel said...

p.s. I'm listening to Mariah Carey's My All