Sunday, December 29, 2013

Wrapping up 2013: Reflections on my Journey around the World and back to Portland

I'm looking forward to the new year. If nothing else, for the switch to an even year. I've always disliked odd numbers for some reason. Even feels fresh and clear (and easily divisible).

Today I picked up my last check from Costco. I chatted with some of my old coworkers and looked around, thinking that it was a nice place for a while, but I won't miss the shopping carts. It wasn't the easiest decision to leave. For a year, I was never tired, not much stressed, but then also didn't have to think a whole lot either. It was a short term job for me, and it was time to move on.

I've been wondering if it was time to move on from my blog. I haven't had a lot to say lately, and it feels like I've completed my journey. Nearly seven years ago, I started writing this blog after I'd plodded away at life, following the recommended course of university-- work-- car-- house. I was only missing the husband and children. At the time my life was on repeat every day, and I was waking up with severe depression, even though I appeared to almost have it all. I'd felt the need to take an extreme step, to disrupt my life and try to wake up from the stupor I was in. For years, I had read books about my idea to move overseas and travel. Finally accomplishing that dream was pretty unbelievable. Even now, sometimes I wonder, "Did I really do that?"

When I left Portland, I had thought it was forever. I never wanted to return. I was tired of the hipsters and the perfect aesthetics, and all the coffee shops and whatnot. It was all so boring. I thought I was done with the Northwest, never to return. I wasn't in love anymore. So it was with some surprise that I ended up back here again, and back in my same job. I felt Portland deserved and needed to be reconsidered, and my former job as well. It was not without trepidation that I entered into these familiar surroundings. The anxieties of past ghosts. Wondering if I would repeat my misery.

But, one year has passed since I returned and I feel like I have made the right choice. And that the five years away was not for naught. It was an important, albeit non direct route, to the place that I am today. Which is contentment. I think this is partly due to the age that I am now, and partly to the life experiences of which I've partaken, and also due to the stability of Justin in my life.

It is not as if I don't still ask the questions. But then I realize, I have it pretty good. There is no perfect person or job or city. But where I am now (with Justin and Portland and Kaiser) is like an old shoe that fits day after day- calming and quiet and supportive. Life is good.

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