Sunday, May 18, 2008

Party of One

As I packed in the morning I kept wandering where I was heading and why.

A harmless trip, I thought. Like I always, I was travelling alone. But it felt I was trying to prove something to myself. As I hit the road, I took the back roads, the scenic routes and I admired my own navigational skills. "I've still got it".

As soon as I muttered those words, it occurred to me that this was no ordinary trip. I was running away from my 29yr old self, trying to be 25 again!

When I turned 25, I experienced true love (which of course had to end in tragedy), then I moved to Europe, travelled all by myself, found my first permanent full-time job as a professional and my life changed forever! I found myself for the first time. I had grown a personality. I was somebody. In fact, I was a grown, self-sufficient capable free woman. I was proud of who I had become.

Then, I made a few bad decisions from 26 to 29. I dated the guy also known as "the perv who was into foursomes", then "the moron who wanted a 'white' wife", ran in the municipal elections (which introduced me to the dark world of cynicism and disappointment) and then dated the guy also known as "the perv who cheated on me with my secretary".

So, last April, I finally crashed. I lost all respect for me and for my life. Last summer I decided to quit dating. Mr. Big moved away and I lost another person who knew me well. I stuck to work. Got my P.Eng. License, got a new job and moved to a new neighbourhood. I needed a change and I got it. But when when it was all said and done, it was time for me to look the truth in the face and finally deal with it:

I am a mess.

I haven't been able to find me (the woman with a lot of character and strength). I have gone into a frenzy obsessing about turning 30 next year, and gone back in time and stuck to the last time I really liked myself: when I was 25.

I am trying to get out of this hole. But it is too deep.

So, I ran away this weekend, looking for my 25-yr old self. I checked into my hotel, a couple of hours later I had my dinner (with some wine) and finally a therapeutic massage (see the view from the Spa at Sheraton) and I was ready to go to my room, when I got invited to a party with some 26-27 yr olds. My 25 yr old self was not going to decline the invitation, nor reject the unknown drink that was being served.

I needed the lesson.

There were many things that I couldn't remember from the time I was 25. I returned to my room only one hour into the party, throwing up until morning. It suffices to say when paramedics showed up and gave me an IV, I remembered 25 was also about silly experiments (with unknown drinks, unknown smokes and unknown people).

I am not silly any more. I am older.

It's true I am a much more cynical person, but that's because I have been crushed and walked all over. I am a more cautious person, because I know a thing or two about bad decisions.

Even though this weekend's trip wasn't what I had planned, it turned out to be an eye opener.

I often think about leaving my life behind and moving to New York, San Francisco or Paris and go to school again. The thought of moving away and starting a new life is very exciting and attractive because it makes me feel 25 again and it helps me run away from me (which is what I do best)

I am done with 25. I started with 25 four years ago, but if I cannot build on it, I will stay in silly forever.

Today, I am 29 and I am wiser for it.

Yet, there is a long road ahead. I need to find me again, love and respect me again. Where do I begin?


At 1:16 p.m., Blogger Dating Trooper - Dating is Warfare said...

I know it doesn't feel like it right now, but this is a beautiful place to be. Rock bottom (and realizing it) means CHANGE is your only option and that means there is nothing left but hope. You are smarter for all your mistakes. But the time is now to STOP beating yourself up for those mistakes and start climbing out of that hole.
Have you read "Eat, Pray, Love"?
You ABSOLUTELY should. I'm not a big self-help guru but this book is a memoir about a woman who was at a time in her life that sounds very similar to yours. She also "ran away" and truly reinvented herself. She is very honest and realistic in the telling of her adventures and I highly recommend it for you at this very moment.
Good luck and remember, there is nowhere to go but up.

At 2:08 p.m., Blogger Jackal said...

"Eat, Pray, Love" !!! hmmmm

you might want to put less emphasis on the first two. don't know which one is worse?!

At 6:47 p.m., Blogger Loverville said...

Ditto for what DT said... no place to go but UP!

Also... have you considered seeing a therapist? SO cathartic. I find that I sometimes have breakthroughs with my shrink just by talking out my problems aloud... before she has even had a chance to respond!

At 7:06 p.m., Blogger The City Gal said...

Yeah! I miss Louis my Therapist. He always said my problem is that I do not trust my own instincts!

At 5:52 p.m., Blogger Mona said...

Well... I have so many things to tell you.
Remember our discussions when you were here, on the beach?

I beleive in you, and like what Louis said, the answer is within you. You've even answered the "where do I begin" question.

You've already started dear, it shows in your post.

Miss you a lot...


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