Monday, September 24, 2007

after pruning

The five minutes is up. I can now announce that I have a home...and this is truly good news. I am grateful beyond measure to have a place for my kids when they're sick and for my kitchen stuff, and the art on my walls. Try to imagine that a year has passed since I've had these luxuries which most of you take for granted.

Now that I have a home, I have to actually find a way to pay for it. This should be easy with my work experience, education and talents. However, I have not had a writing job since July. My screenwriting classes have very few people in them, so that I end up making about $8 per hour. What's more I have actually had trouble getting simple jobs like "grocery store clerk". I figure I have to work a minimum of 32 hours at $10 an hour in order to meet my obligations. All of this seems completely unreal to me, like I've gone down some kind of drain and come out into an alternate universe where I don't have much to offer or something.

One of the problems is really just that my kids are my priority and I have been trying to work around their schedule. I finally must admit that my kids will have to do without me, and given my stress level, are probably better off. I have to work straight through a good chunk of my alotted time with them. It breaks my heart.

I wonder if the stress of staying in a lie and getting physically and emotionally abused by one scared mad man was actually worse than this. Now, I am living a truth that I hardly recognize.

I'm so used to telling stories about how my life is special and wonderful, that it is hard to be truthful all the time. People who ask, "How are you?" are most likely to receive, "I'm great!" I used to hate it when people actually felt obligated to tell me their sad stories, and so I really work at not doing that myself, but I have such a sad story going on now. It's a hard split. Truthfully, am I fine? Well, sure. I seem to have much to be grateful for right now in particular.

Yet, the stress of having it work out seems astronomical sometimes. I have to compromise much of what I value the most -- time with my kids, time on the tango floor, and even time to do my religious commitments -- in order to find work to pay the bills that keeps a roof over our heads and food on the table much less anything extra. I really don't get it.

I want to bloom, to live my purpose in life, rather than being an unfulfilled bud. It does seem that in order to do that in reality at some point down the line, I just have to concentrate on growing a stronger root system. I guess I am just coming out of pruning mode, and even dormancy, in my life. I have to look at the situation I find myself in and say yes, I'm actually rooted now, and maybe I have a few tender shoots. We'll see. I don't know how it works beyond this point.

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