Tuesday, March 06, 2012

The Down Side of Homecoming

In case you're wondering, I did get those two iPhones back together.

They function exactly as they did before I took them apart. That is to say, they don't.

I replaced the battery in Ed Ward's old iPhone, and it holds a charge now, but the SIM holder needs soldering as one of the contacts came out during a fight with a SIM card holder. The other one, 27Ray's old phone that he found smashed in the gutter, is still smashed. I tried changing the case but it's no different than it was before I changed the case. And since the on/off switch is the broken part, I can't restart it in DFU mode or even get the little pineapple icon to stop hanging out on the screen.

I've been quiet here on the blog. There are a couple of reasons for that. More than a couple. Coming home after an extended journey, or in my case an expedition, is never the easiest transition. I knew this and expected it—after all, I've gone around the world before, lived abroad six other times, and I know too well the inevitable post-trip crash. This is it? This is my life? I do laundry, make coffee, and race around to make the money that pays the bills? Even after all that change I made, this is STILL my godawful routine boring life?

Yep. Alter all you want. Nothing really changes. I'm old enough to know that, and not young enough to think "it'll be different this time," or the ultimate in self-delusion, that a net will miraculously appear if you leap. You make the net. It doesn't materialize out of thin air.

Remember those mistakes you've made before? You're going to make them again. And again. And the disappointment you felt when you woke up and said "Today is quite similar to yesterday and tomorrow?"

That's going to happen again too.

I've solved this in the past by introducing challenge and novelty into my life through different methods. I learned to sew. I learned woodworking and made a table. I've written books. Years ago, I learned to color and then to teach. That's why I was taking apart iPhones. I need to challenge myself so that I don't fall into too deep a routine, which leads to me being disappointed in myself.

But I screwed up. Here's what happened.

When I came back, I stepped into the chaos of other people being in my life again after ten months of being solely responsible to myself. I didn't have a clue what to do. I panicked, tried to hide it, came off as distant or grumpy probably, then tried to overcompensate and came off as too needy, realized then that I was acting like a lunatic, and now I'm trying to calm the hell down and remember who I am, not who I think I'm supposed to be because other people are in the room.

But that's not all. That's never all. There's also the fact that I spent dizzying amounts of money on MariesWorldTour.com. The dollar isn't doing so hot, but the real problem is that I didn't create my itinerary based on places I could afford. I decided to make the jump, to go to places I *can't* afford, because they're unlikely to get cheaper and I'm unlikely to end up roaming around in quite this way to Tahiti, Bhutan, and Nigeria again.

So when I arrived home, I decided not to spend money. Which was a mistake. Three options presented themselves: small group training at the gym down the block, adult acting classes at the arts center across the street, and new creative space studios just under the arts center.

My prescription for myself is to stay busy by learning and opening up to new ideas.

And I didn't do it.

I'm done with the iPhones now. I know how they work and can take the one apart again and take the logic board to the Russian iPhone guy in the hotel on 8th Avenue. Let him fix the SIM card holder.

And I'm done being overwhelmed and disappointed.

I hope they start more classes nearby soon. That's exactly what I need to get out of the house, so long as I'm freelancing.

Which is going to be at least another month—I'm in the middle of a big Marvel job, and I can't even think about what to do for employment until it's finished.

So yeah, I've been slack on the blog. I can't say that I've been busy. I can say that I've been discombobulated, disoriented, and yes, probably a bit alienated from my home society. I'm not entirely sure when the next small group gym classes start or when the next acting starts, but it's definitely time to get a grip and remember how to be alive here, not just how to live here.

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