Friday, August 13, 2010

Jackie - I am written.

I can't believe Sarah's gone. It feels like our apartment is extremely empty. If I'm honest, life feels a little empty.

I've experienced a plethora emotions the past few weeks -- new emotions I'm not entirely sure how to process. They are deeply emotional, heart-wrenching and, yet, welcome. I've never had a friend like Sarah before. We say we're kindred spirits, but somehow those words don't seem to do it justice. We know each other and can read the other person. And when one of us is in a bad mood, the other doesn't get offended. We look out for each other. We can share secrets, fears, pipe dreams and embarrassing admissions knowing the other won't judge. We can agree to disagree.

I care more deeply about Sarah that I do myself... which is why I can send her off to a new life with honest-to-goodness well wishes.

We've become somewhat of a team and share future goals and dreams, and a hope to remain friends forever. We laugh that when the two of us have had our adventures, we'll be sitting side by side in wheelchairs next to each other in the nursing home "activity room" gabbing about nothing in particular and commenting on life. And least I hope. But then again, I just launched her off to a new life.

That's what the [first] trip to Portland a few weeks ago was all about -- launching Sarah into a new life. And that's what we did: a car load of Sarah's belongings, 20 hours of driving, settling her into new place, getting matching tattoos, finding our way around town and trying to locate the places the cool kids hang out. But in the back of my mind has been the reality that to truly launch her means that she if finds a new best friend, I have to be happy for her that she's found someone to be close with in her own city, so she's not alone. And if that happens, hopefully I will be.

But enough of the sad talk... back to the point.

And I have to admit that mixed with all the sad emotions of coming home alone and the happy emotions for Sarah to start something new, is more jealousy than I'd like to admit.

There was this advertisement we saw a lot driving around Portland that said, "What's on Your Canvas?" It drove me nuts to think about. Sarah gets a completely blank canvas with which to work --  she can decide how her job, social life, friends, writing, personal time, and everything else are going to look. She gets to recreate life.

I'm frustrated because I feel like my life is stuck. I have a life that is already full. And it's hard to add more to full. Oh, how I would love to scrap all the everyday obligations and to-dos and build a new life. To start from the bottom up creating life exactly as I want it. The problem is for the most part, I kind of like the things currently on my canvas and when I think about getting rid of something, I'm stumped.

How can I become this person I want to be, doing the things I want to do when it doesn't feel like it's humanly possible to make it all fit? So that's where I've been... frustrated. Annoyed. Confused. And wondering, why did I get "I am written" on my wrist?

Because here's the deal with that:

When an author writes a book, they start with an overall idea and create characters. They very intentionally create characters including their names, personality traits, the things they're good at, the way the dress, they way they talk, everything has a purpose. And any author would tell you that when they write a story, the character writes the story with them. The author has the overall idea, but as the story progresses the character contributes, adds, colors the story with their own unique flair. [Thanks Donald Miller for inspiring us.]

Sarah and I are saying with our tattoos that we were both created intentionally, to live out a story and that it's our responsibility to write our story with the author.

Right now I'm stuck in the midst of an internal battle between "just living what I've got" and "living an intentional story."

I wish I had something more profound to say and a positive report on at least one of my goals. But I'm feeling really stuck at the moment and my goals have taken to the wayside.

I don't know... what are your thoughts? How much of the story should one write intentionally? And how much of life should you just live what you've got?

1 comment:

  1. Hey... I will tell you that when you're best friend is half way across the country it does not eliminate your friendship. I've had the same best friend for 24 years and I still talk to her at least once a week (we've lived 800+ miles apart for 9 years).
    As far as your canvas goes, what I've learned is when you try to write your story on your own you "use the eraser" a lot. By that I mean you find a lot of lessons but not necessarily the outcomes you thought you would.
    My recommendation, live life to the best of your ability. Stay in contact with Sarah and know that when you've found your kindred spirit, that's hard to squash... no matter the distance.
    My dad told me once that he thinks people have more than one soul mate and it's not necessarily always a soul mate of love. I've spent a lot of time thinking on that and I believe he's right. I would say my best friend and I are soul mates... we were meant to be friends and part of each others lives. It sounds to me like Sarah is that kind of friend to you.
    Remember, no matter what you are loved and in the end you'll have great memories and wonderful experiences to reminisce on. You will grow and change, but you'll still be you. To keep with the "story" idea... you'll be like a classic 1st edition novel in the end. :o)

    Hope that helps,



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