Thursday, September 01, 2005

I used to think the title option would be cool.

This time of year is usually sort of happy for me, in an anxious sort of way. Having been a student for…umm, ever it seems, I associate the coming of Autumn with all of those back to school sorts of feelings. There’s excitement, dread, the joy and drudgery of having a schedule again.

This year is sort of odd. I was in school already this summer, and I’m only just in the middle of my break now. The Boy had his first day back on Tuesday, and I’m already sort of missing him. It’s not the same around here without his (and his million-fifty neighborhood friends) squawking and spilling things and wanting me to cook every thirty seconds. I miss them.

I’ve gotten to spend a lot of time with my niece lately. My brother’s really funny about her presence on the internet, so I’ll just call her Mystery Baby. Mystery Baby and I have been discovering the joy of shaking leaves on trees, and barking at all furry animals (either because they’re dogs and that’s polite, or because they’re not and they therefore deserve barking at). We’ve had crawling races, and tried new foods and worked to master the fine art of pat-a-cake.

This past week has felt sort of sad. I don’t know if it’s because I’m missing the Boy being around every day, or if I’m just not used to having so much free time, or what it is. I guess it could be a lot of things. There are a lot of stressors in life just now; of course, I can’t remember when there hasn’t been.

I was finally accepted as a grad student at Ohio State. After a quarter of being present, I’m officially allowed to be there now. That rocks because now I’m actually going to be able to get some financial help from the school. I’m hoping for scholarships, but at this point, I’d be pretty glad for loans. I’m broke. And gas is very expensive.

I know that I’m prone to negativity. And being an oversensitive type, I’m prone to piggybacking on somebody else’s bad day. But I don’t want to be unhappy this week. I have a lot to be happy about. Adjustment periods always make me nervous I guess. Becoming bolder and more talkative means that I have to think more carefully about what I say. Certainly, after the fact, all I do is think about what it is I’ve just said and all of the reasons I shouldn’t have said it.

I wonder if things will ever settle down for me. It seems like I’ve been transitioning now for years and years. Maybe that’s how life is for everyone. Maybe things don’t ever stop becoming something else.

In church not too long ago, the preacher said something about how unknowable God is. If you go running toward His presence, you’ll often find that it’s not there by the time you reach where you were heading. He’s always coming just as you’re going, and going just as you’re coming. And sometimes when you’re sitting very still, and not going anywhere at all, He’s right there and you never even saw Him approaching.

It seems like a lot of things are that way. Every time I start to think I’ve really figured something out, it’s gone. When I think I get to know someone, they turn out to be someone else entirely. When I think I’ve finally figured out where I’m going, I find myself in a place I’ve never been. The preacher told us once, and I think it’s true, “If you want to make God laugh, get comfortable.”

I’m definitely not comfortable now. Things feel unsettled; I feel distant and melancholy. I’m stuck at Jasmin’s by myself today because I couldn’t justify the cost of gas to drive back home for the day, only to return again in a few hours to get The Boy back off the bus. It’s too quiet here, I need to find something to do.