Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Life serves up a big piece of reality pie......

I haven't posted in a very long time, longer than ever (for me), and part of the reason has been because I couldn't figure out how to say what I was thinking, or how to articulate my feelings. That does not mean, however, that nothing has been happening.........

When I got here, to Florida, I was living in a fantasy world, the same one I had lived in when I was in Tennessee. It was a world in which I thought that moving to Florida would solve all my problems, and make me happy beyond measure. I was over the moon excited when Bella messaged me and offered me a place to stay, with her and her husband, and so was she. It's what we had hoped and dreamed would happen, so we could be in contact in the flesh, instead of just exclusively online. I mean, who wouldn't want to be able to live with their best friend, right?

Well, as it is often the case, the reality of a situation is very different than whatever fantasy one can dream up. For the first few weeks, until the "newness" wore off, things were great. But then, reality set in. 

It took longer than we thought for me to get a job, and then the tension started building. Not between us, mind you, but with the strain of having an extra mouth to feed, and having their resources already stretched very thin, having me around caused a massive "elephant" of worry to invade their home. Having a roommate was not something they were used to, and me just being here inevitably caused changes to their routine. Having your home "invaded" by another person, one who is not part of your normal family, whether they pay their way or not, is stressful. 

The feeling before I got here was that everything would be great. We'd hang out, do stuff together. It would be awesome.........there was no way things would be "bad".

The reality though, is that people have to eat. Bills still need to be paid. And extra people in the house means there is more to pay. So there is worry.

I can tell you with no reservation that this is not how I envisioned life turning out. I have never liked the idea of causing a burden to anyone, much less my best friend. I didn't come down here to make her life difficult, but that is in fact what has happened......sorta. Now that I've been working for a little over a month, my paychecks will soon become steady, and predictable, and at least the financial strain I have been will ease significantly. But the invasion of privacy factor will not, until I move out. THAT is something I cannot wait for. For their sake. Their house is only just big enough for the three of them, and they deserve to have their own space back. 

Another flavor in this heaping helping of reality pie is the way she and I interact. When your only interaction with someone is online, with typed words on a screen, things don't always come across the same as they would in person. Add to that the strange fact that I myself don't talk the same online as I do in person, well, you can see how things might be different when you're all of a sudden talking exclusively in person. I warned Bella beforehand that I was like that, and yet could not provide an explanation, and still can't, but still, how does someone prepare for that?

Anyway, the fact of the matter is, things just turned out to be a lot different than we thought. I know I'm probably making it sound like it's all terrible, and that's not the case at all. It's just.......different........than we imagined it.

I said all that so that now I can say this: It's been an educational experience in many ways. I have learned a lot about myself, and so have Bella and Jack. Having me around has been a catalyst for things that could not have happened had I not been here. They are more united than they have ever been, and I could not be happier to see it. When problems have come up, they have come together as a family to solve them. I myself have learned that just because you can imagine how things will go, the reality is completely different. You can't try to make the fantasy into reality either, because it's not real. Life is not like the movies in your head.

Bella means the world to me. I love her with every fiber of my being. It has been painful to know that my presence has caused her undue stress. I can only imagine the conflict in her mind, of her being so happy I'm here, but yet so ready for me to leave. She had a period of "silence", where she didn't talk to me much for about 4 days, because she didn't know how to express what she was feeling to me,  to exorcise the "elephant" the stress had grown into. How do you tell your best friend that while you love them dearly, you just can't handle them being in your house? It was horrible for her, and it hurt me beyond measure that she had to go through it, and really, is STILL going through it. And it's not me personally, it would be the same if it were anyone else. The fact that it IS me though makes it all the more painful. Their house is just not suited for having a roommate. 

Like I said earlier, I don't want to make it sound like life is bad, because it's not. There were just logistical things we didn't plan for when we planned for me to come down here, and there has been stress. And then there's my "new" job. 

This Walmart is a lot different than the one I worked at in Tennessee. They use a different sort of management procedure for the night stockers, and it has taken some getting used to. I thought I was just going to jump right in where I left off, but with the rules being a little different, it's been quite a challenge. There's a lot of pressure to finish with the freight in the specified time frame, and they are sticklers with the computer based task management system. Adding to that is the different layout of the store, which I don't like, the cooler and freezers are smaller, as are the receiving areas. It's harder to move around, there always seems to be something in the way. But I'm getting used to it, and the stress level I have has waned recently as I adjust to my new environment. 

Of course I've met a ton of new people, and with them being in a different place geographically, they are different psychologically than those I knew in Tennessee. I find my interactions with them are subsequently different. They are more focused on their work, and complain less, they do what they have to do and go home, and I appreciate that.

All in all life is good. We all have daily challenges to deal with, things that are not always comfortable, but that's what reality is. Everything in a fantasy comes up roses. Reality usually serves up an equal measure of both. My perspective on life has changed. I no longer live in the fantasy world I had made for myself. Taking a new perspective on life has also prompted me to change the name of my blog to "Perth's Perspective", because it seems much more appropriate. I feel I have "grown up" a lot in the last 2 months, and learned some important lessons. I don't feel so alone, I don't wish for things I can't have, or imagine what my life is while ignoring the reality. 

Reality pie tastes good.

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