Saturday, June 7, 2014

Maybe It's Not About Oatmeal

It's so strange. I come to my hometown and it's always the same: "I'm so jealous of your life. Your pictures are so beautiful. What's it like?" And I'm not going to sugar coat it, that stuff can really fuel an ego. Like, yeah, I'm totally living this wild life of adventure.


But I have to be real. It's not like these people are thinking about how I drive  an hour to the grocery store (let alone the frustration when I get home and realize I forgot something). Or that I actually work in an office and go to meetings and have to make deadlines and answer the phone and pay bills. Or the times I'm sitting in my apartment thinking it would be nice to just GO somewhere and see people.

Because sure, it's totally amazing to watch the sunrise over the mountains each morning and be dazzled by the stars each night.

But what I'm learning is... that's not where it's at.

Because people forget that I also see photos of friends at the beach or hanging out at some of my favorite places or going to events that I have to miss and it's matter where you go there you are.

It used to totally freak me out - I'd come home and have nothing to talk about with people past "how's the job/wife/kids?" They'd start talking about so and so and I'd have no idea...and I'd slowly start to notice that I just didn't care either, but I don't like feeling judgmental or superior because I've always felt that is just as bad as anything and it's rooted in insecurity anyways, and most of all I'd hate feeling like an outsider (no pun intended) and judgment and superiority cause separate-ness and that's the opposite of what I'm going for here. And I'd start to tell people about something from my "new life" and sure it might be a great story, but there's nowhere to go with that conversation. There's no common ground... (you can see that this is a stream of conscious nobody -including myself- should really follow)

I'm home (meaning in my hometown where I grew up) this weekend, and this morning my mom seemed so concerned she didn't have anything for me to eat. "All I have is packaged oatmeal - it's not organic or anything."


For some reason that shook me a little bit. I can still eat packaged oatmeal. Because like I said...that's not where it's at.

Where it's at is Saturday morning in the kitchen with my mom preparing me a warm meal as we catch up on....whatever... I don't even know. And maybe she's recommending me a doctor and I'm saying I'm considering acupuncture instead...but I mean, I can still eat packaged oatmeal.

No matter what, we all worry about the same stuff. We're all looking for the exact same thing, just using different means to get there. I come home and worry that all my girlfriends have false eyelashes on and I don't but I go back to the mountains and worry that I'm the only one wearing mascara. And I buy a bag of snap pea chips and realize it's made with canola oil but they're so good and I want to keep eating them but then I come back to New Jersey and my mom is worried about oatmeal.

If I go down the wrong thinking pattern, I'll come to the conclusion that I'm not outdoorsy enough for the mountains and I'm not city enough for my hometown. But really, I like my mascara and I like sleeping in the woods and I can still eat packaged oatmeal. I mean, it's not like I have some kind of oat farm in my backyard.

Because in the end... the scenery inside doesn't change.