November 19, 2009

not waiting anymore

Posted in waiting tagged at 2:04 am by Lakshmi (LaChelle)

What is she really waiting for?

I’ve spent most of my life waiting. I used to mark the days on my big wall calender with big colorful X’s and then scribble through the entire box. I didn’t realize what I was doing until my roommate at the time commented on it. She said, “You look like you are counting down the days for something.” And I always was. I was counting down the days until a vacation in school. Or until the boy I liked at the time returned from India. Or for the day I would finally get my braces off. There was always some moment I was trying to get to, as if in that moment, I would be truly happy.

And my life right now, so uncertain and unstable, could be described as a whole metaphorical waiting room. There are huge questions that have still to be answered for my life, and nothing really is final, even though, for most people at my age, that isn’t the case. I’m 29 and I guess I am still waiting on The Permanent Things: a husband, my house to own, a better car, a family (maybe), to have sex, my career. I mean, when I think of The American Dream, my life sort of falls short.

The Last Kiss is one of my favorite movies. It is about this guy who is 30 with a great job and he is about to have a child, but he is hesitant to get married and ends up having an affair because he feels like, after marriage, there “won’t be anymore surprises.” Well, that’s really all my life is, a big bag of surprises.

I don’t know what really happened, if I just don’t care about those “permanent” things as much as I used to or if I’m just used to not having them, but I’m much better now at living in the moment and loving it for what it is. I can look at what I don’t have as a void, but it isn’t really. I live in a beautiful house, I have some amazingly beautiful close girl friends (one of whom I get to live with), I live close to the ocean and downtown LA and a whole host of other amazing places. I’m not saying that waiting is a bad thing. In fact, sometimes I feel I can be too content at times. Waiting and desiring for something can be beautiful too, because of love, because you want something so much. And it is wonderful to want. But for me, I guess now, I’m working toward various things (you know, I’m getting “out there,” and I’m progressing in school, making relationships and all that), but at the same time, I’m in a period where I’m not really sitting on the window ledge, my hair blowing in the wind, peering out for my Prince Charming, (a metaphor for all that is good in the future). I used to do that a lot. But now I’ve backed away from the window, leaving it open, but enjoying the world inside the tower as well as stepping outside of it, noticing what is surrounding me, instead of what I hope will someday be.

Since I was a little girl, I dreamt of getting married to a boy with a beautiful last name. Part of me is a poet, and I adore words, the sounds and the tastes of them. I would sit and write down my first name with a whole host of lovely last names which belonged to boys I didn’t know: Constantine, Michaels, Rachel. . . (this was in elementary school and well, beyond, mind you.) But I guess around age 26 I got tired of waiting. A change in my last name would be so much more than beautiful; it would signal a new dimension in my life, a slightly new identity. And I realized I didn’t have to necessarily wait for Augustus Constantine to ask for my hand in marriage. I could change my own name myself. So I did. Not to Constantine, but to a last name that made more sense for me. A bold move. But it meant so much.

So sometimes, I admit, I’m lonely or anxious for the things I want, because I do want. Sometimes badly. But I’ve really practiced reminding myself that my life is pretty blessed as it is. There is always something I need to be doing in the present moment that is, at the very least, a distraction, and at best, productive to making my life the best it can be for the present and perhaps the future.

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