Thursday, June 25, 2009

A Valerie Retrospective
Part 3: The Location

I don't think I need to discuss this issue too deeply, because I basically just did, in my soul-searching masterpiece, "Where do you go?"

Every so often, I get restless. I read this good quote from Moby-Dick. The narrator was saying that whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in his soul, he knows it's time for him to get to sea. My soul feels pretty autumnal itself, but I don't have any particular desire to get to sea; I just want to get away! I want to go where I'll be happy! However, I have concluded that I don't want to live any of the places I thought I did. I don't want to live in Ohio because it is a whirlpool of stagnation (and only in Ohio would such a depressing impossibility occur), and it's cold. I don't want to live in Maryland, because after three years of living here, suffering too much sadness, and losing friends more often than I make them, I just don't see anything to recommend this place. And it's still not very warm. Southern California, my ace in the hole, turned out to be all wrong. And it was cold there, too--the unseasonable freak of weather during my visit must have been a sign that I'm not destined to live there.

So I feel pretty much adrift. I'm a rootless wanderer. I'm a woman without a home. It makes me very antsy. When am I going to live somewhere where I feel like I belong?

Conclusion: Home is where the heart is. When all I knew was my family home in Toledo, Ohio, that was all I wanted. When I discovered acceptance and friendship in Ashland, I felt like Ashland was my home. When I found true love in Maryland, I felt like Maryland was the place to be. When Maryland became the place where I was ignored and abandoned, it lost its appeal for me. I'm sure that I can be content anywhere that I am surrounded by quality friends and love. I think I'd even choose to live in someplace relatively cold (relatively--like maybe down to hardiness zone 6) if that meant that I'd be living with someone/two/three/four/etc. who made me happy. Obviously I can't leave Maryland until I'm done at the University of Baltimore. After that, I think it's more beneficial for me to focus on developing happy relationships and stop worrying so much about my geographic location (after all, I am already living in hardiness zone 6)!