Monday, August 16, 2010

Thoughts to Ponder

I was recently asked if I am happy now that I've moved to DC. I've thought a lot about this actually. This is an interesting quesiton with an interesting answer. While, yes, I am infinitely happier than I was prior to moving to DC, I am not completely statisfied. It's more like a moderate happy. There's just something missing and I can't quite put my finger on it.

I have to keep reminding myself that I haven't done too shabby for myself...I have a job, live in a metropolitan city, live by myself in a super cute apartment (if I don't say so myself!) and can make it on my own. But I think back on when I lived in London and every morning (ok, not all 365 days...but still) I woke up super happy and reveling in the thought that I was living my dream and excited to see what the day would bring. Even when I looked over and still saw my roommate happily sleeping in her bed in the same room :) Perhaps I am looking back on it with rose colored glasses because I did miss home and my friends but I had more than enough to occupy my time. Maybe I haven't given DC a chance...but really, I don't know. London just had so much to offer, such personality. I loved just jumping on a bus and exploring the city above ground or Hannah and I would wonder the streets with only a map to get us back home. Perhaps when it starts to cool down and its not 100+ degree temps I will try to start exploring the city more. After all, I need to try to figure out an area that I'd like to live in next year when/if I move into the city. Hmm, we'll see.


  1. I had a little time to "ponder" your thoughts to ponder over the past day or so. I think that you are completely normal is what you feel/think about DC in comparison to London. I agree with you that once the temperature cools down a bit you will probably enjoy DC a little more than you do right this minute. If there is anyone who can sympathize with humidity putting a dampening on the mood - it's the girl posting from New Orleans. It's so humid here that I have not once attempted to flat iron my curly hair- it would prove to be a complete waste of time in about .05 seconds.

    The rest of what you are describing (in my humble little opinion) is a lot of what I have felt recently. Although, I'm not quite sure my culprit is the city. I have felt, since graduating from grad school that life is so completely different than anyone ever depicted it would be. Some of the adventure stops, there are rules about when and where you are supposed to be, and the instant "friend" network is almost obliterated. It becomes work, in some cases a part-time job, to preserve the part of you that isn't connected to the workplace. Some people are more highly skilled or motivated to pursue this and others (like myself) are either more content to have "me" time or are actually a little put off by what we perceive as a lack of accomplishment.

    Recently, I read a (not-so-good) book called "Quarterlife Crisis" by Alexandra Robbins. I bought the book thinking and hoping I would find some solace and some tips for coping with the quarterlife crisis. In fact, I did not find anything helpful other than an author/publication indicating that I was not alone in how I felt. Which, I suppose, was probably more help than I realize right now. But still, knowing me like you do, you know that I like to look for or identify a workable solution - so I was left hanging.

    It would be easy for me to sit and type "this is all about the journey and we are finding ourselves along the way...." but I won't - I know you are too pessimistic for that ;) What I will say is that while we may always have exactly what we need in terms of housing, food, necessities (in your case those Jimmy Choos or Christian Milano Blancs with the red heels - I know I'm butchering this holy verbage).. but it's the drive, desire and passion to seek the moments of challenge, that we keep our eyes peeled for. Hopefully, as time goes on and we age, the ability to identify these challenges becomes easier and the readiness to dive in doesn't wane.

    I read a book a few months ago called "The Crucibles of Leadership." The author talks about a specific type of individual who constantly seeks a mode of crisis because of the "high" it produces for them. I imagine this to be something you felt for your London experience. When I read the book I knew immediately the moments in my life that I could pinpoint and describe in parallel to the authors' examples. The book is a worthwhile read if you're interested.

    If I get a chance anytime soon to visit DC we'll do it right. I'll force you to take me to museums and see historical mumbo jumbo. It's possible that when you experience a place through someone else's glasses things may begin to draw into focus.

  2. Could you possibly be putting to much pressure on yourself? While we often yearn for things past or future, we often miss the chance to just "be" and enjoy the moment. Remember all the things that you have accomplished in such a short time. You listed some of them yourself. I applaud your efforts to get involved in a charity you feel passionate about. You're volunteering, you're furthering the success of your sorority, you're fiercely independent as your run the streets of DC, and you handle your finances like a champ without handouts from your parents or a man. You're out there making it happen!

    I'm also hearing though that you know where you might be happier. What can you do now to make THAT happen? If it's your dream, go for it! (although I don't like that you keep moving farther away from me!)