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One Year

November 13, 2011

A year ago today I left my parents house and officially began the journey to Los Angeles. In reflecting upon the last year I found that not only was it difficult because of the stress of moving 3,000 miles away, but because almost every situation in the past 365 days was a brand new one for me. Sure, I’ve gotten new jobs before, but lawsuits? A dog? Car insurance? Moving without the help of my brothers?!

This all corroborated the feeling that I’ve had that I’ve done a lot of growing up this year. I never used to think I was closed-minded, but it is almost as if I just began to see the world with yellows, purples and oranges and I’d only seen reds, blues, and greens before. Just because red, blue, and green are the best doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t look at yellows, purples and oranges. My world was so small, the people that I knew were all intertwined in one way or another. I assumed that no matter my actions and decisions I’d always be okay. As scary as this is, now I know that there is a chance I might not be okay, and I love that. The world isn’t a game. Life is made of lessons and we are constantly learning and if you never leave the bubble of home, whatever that means for you, you are missing out on reality. I’m having a hard time being articulate about this but I’ll keep trying. I feel like everything existed in a privileged kind of way, people who wanted for things were “poor people” and I wasn’t like them and therefore wasn’t around them. Now, I realize just how “on a pedestal” that kind of thinking was. Poor people? I’m a poor person! I’m not talking about my family, but I’m talking about me (I could say “I am the 99%” here, but, you know, it doesn’t really drive my point home). I’m not saying that my life is falling apart or that I’m miserable or in “trouble” per say, but each month when the 28th rolls around and I realize that I’m not even close to having enough money to pay rent two days later I remember that things are real. For the first time each action and decision I make has a reaction that I need to be aware of. Do I want to go out to dinner tonight? If yes, then the credit card bill will be another month of “minimum payment”.

I didn’t even sit down to write about money. I don’t like money. I like having it, but I don’t like what it does, or doesn’t do when one does not have it. I do like what I’ve learned from it, but…oh here I am again, RAMBLING ON.

I wanted to write about discoveries, about how driving across the country learned me to discover people unlike myself. When you grow up in a homogeneous environment, like I did, you believe that everyone is like you, even if you know that to be untrue. I thought I branched out when I went to college. Now I don’t know what I was thinking when I had that thought. If by branching out you mean, rich WASPY kids instead of rich Jewish kids, then yes, I really did branch out. Except not at all because the more I think about it the more I realize that I have a lot of Jewish friends from college. No, I did not go to college with exclusively privileged people, that is unfair, nor would I say that all of these people were “spoiled”, but on a grand scale, when you clump everyone together, it felt that way. I will say again, this is probably because of my own short sightedness and I’m sure not everyone felt that way, at all. ANYWAY, spending ten days in the car seeing this country taught me more about the world than any class I’ve ever taken in my expensive history of education.

Now that I am here, it would be foolish to say that I have no regrets, but I like being foolish. I don’t think life is about having regrets, I think life is about making mistakes and seeing how your decisions and choices take you in different directions. I am here (in both the physical and psychological senses of the word) because every decision I have ever made has led me here, so who am I to have regrets about those decisions? Tomorrow I will wake up and who knows? And you know what?

That is something to look forward to.

Sunset over the Mississippi. November 2010

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