Happy New Year to all!
Please forgive the unannounced break I took for the past few weeks, it wasn't intentional I assure you, merely a consequence of my busy work schedule. The holidays are a busy time for all with the buying and the baking and the signing up to work four days of double shifts the week of Christmas. What you didn't do the same?
Christmas brought with it much joy, my family from Kentucky, and the day after Christmas brought me boarding a plane to Chicago. Yes I returned for a week in the faire Windy City, and much to my surprise it was there right where I left it. I was asked to travel to Chicago for work, not work of theatrical variety, but of the Day-Spa management kind. The Chicago location of my workplace was short staffed and they decided to fly me in to help for a week. Kind of random, but kind of wonderful.
But let's be real: this week in Chicago was by no means a vacation. I worked every day except for one, and time seemed to be on speed because before I knew it a new decade was upon us and I was boarding a plane back out east. However, despite my busy schedule I did get to reconnect with some dear Chicago friends, spend a little time reflecting, and down a few beverages of the alcoholic variety in the process. It was nice, and I am glad I went.
I won't lie and say it didn't occur to me to say "screw New York" and stay put in Chicago. I was met with many feelings of conflict which have stuck with me the past few weeks since my return. For one, I have what feels like the makings of a real adult starter home there. I remember staring into my bedroom my first night back with it's window treatments, rug and an actual bed frame and thinking about decorating ideas. Here in Queens we have a lovely bedroom, and a lovely home for that matter, but it feels very transient. Neither of us plan to buy any furniture or hang any wall art in this place, because on some level we know we won't be staying put. Sure, there are still rooms to be painted an items to be purchased in Chicago but we want to invest in wall colors and because we hope to invest in a life there. At least that's what I think we will end up doing. It's hard not to know, and with the stability of Jürgen's contract no longer tying us down it's hard not to throw in the towel.
On top of window treatments and flooring, I have an emotional home in Chicago: my friends. Now let's be clear, I have my brother and some life long friends here as well (which is incredible) but I feel like I am a part of a community in Chicago. It's hard to explain, but I realized while I was there how much I know the city, how beautiful it is and how much a part of myself I see in Chicago. I have wine nights, a theatre company, a tree lined street, a car, an understanding of which way is East, friends with little babies who grow so fast, and so many memories. It's challenging not to run to safety when life in a new zip code isn't wrapped in a pretty bow. I know it will take time, and I am willing to invest the time, but packing to head back "home" when you already feel like you are home is disorienting and conflicting.
So it has been a busy and rather heavy few weeks!
But never fear I am back and ready to blog again! I have some ideas a cookin' and I look forward to sharing them with you all!
And please, worry not about little ol' me, I will be just fine. I have made the commitment to being out here, and I know this city holds many opportunities for not only career advancement but also friendship and self discovery. In my heart I know this move, this challenge, this change was necessary. Perhaps I will have many places to call home for the time being, and maybe I don't need to restrict myself to one area code. Time will undoubtedly unveil some answers and in the meantime I can continue to power through each day knowing I am growing a little bit in the process.
So onward and upward dear readers! Where twenty-ten shall lead me, lead us, know one knows, but I am certainly excited to find out.