10 Years.

September 26, 2009

I don’t have any pics online or on my harddrive of my high school graduation, so you’ll have to take one of college! Here I am with my mama, Walter, and my now ex-husband, then boyfriend. I am freezing – it was only 50F that day, but it was worth it to walk with those wings. Also: I didn’t have an eating disorder, I was just that skeletally thin from a combination of stress and stomach flu.

I’m on my way to my 10th high school reunion. My oh my, 10 years since I graduated from Vermont Academy! And what have I done in those 10 years?

  • Went to Germany for a few months. Hung out. Took a trip to Paris, Normandy, and the Netherlands. Learned a lot about my family and myself.
  • Came home, got surgery on my wonky ankle, took my first f/t nannying gig.
  • Went to Hampshire! Started out studying human biology and discovered that I can’t resist the pull of art. Tried to focus in painting and paint and I do well together, but after a chance assignment by one of my advisors, found my way back to the scissors and glue I’ve been working with since I was old enough to be trusted with either scissors or glue. Of course, I say “scissors” somewhat metaphorically, since now I mostly use my Xacto knife.
  • Had a bunch of medical problems that would shape my life for 8 of these 10 years.
  • Had a girlfriend. Spent two years together, but ultimately, it just didn’t go anywhere. I’d like to think I learned something about relationships, but maybe not.
  • Met my ex-husband. Spent the last year at Hampshire really emotionally tied up in a long distance relationship between Iceland and Massachusetts. In retrospect, not only was more invested than he was, but it really did hold me back from fully investing in my art. Perhaps there was a better way to do this, but I don’t regret it and it was the best I could do at the time.
  • Graduated! A week later, I moved to Iceland. Of course, I had been there a few times already during said last year of college.
  • Got married. Had immigration troubles. Couldn’t really do much in the 13 mos. I spent in Iceland. Got depressed in a wicked way. Moved back to the u-SOFA. Had some troubles with re-entry. Lived through it. Ended up in Providence. Settled in.
  • Taught preschool for a year. Loved it. That is, loved the kids. Experienced extreme hair-pulling levels of frustrations with the structure of the school. Thought perhaps I needed to work at a different school. Tried it. That didn’t work either. Took what was supposed to be a few month break making coffee, but ended up making coffee for a year. The worst part of this? I got paid more for making coffee.
  • Had an art show! Yay! Felt validated after my final meeting with my advisors in college ended with the question “Why did you major in art anyway? No one was holding a gun to your head.” The only answer I could come up with was “It seemed like a good idea at the time.” Getting out on my own reminded me that the process of art school was worth it to go through to learn self-discipline, but ultimately, the only final arbiter of my work is myself.
  • Got divorced. Life kind of fell apart for a bit. The plot didn’t so much get lost as the writers all went on strike, all at once. Lost the job as well. Temped for a bit. Kind of lost in the ethers for most of the latter half of ’07, really. I had already met Nuno and we became friends and rather suddenly, became involved, and not long after that, moved in together. Or rather, he already lived here and my fat animal and I moved in.
  • Moved to Boston for a year. I hated Boston before, tried to give it a fresh chance, ended up hating it anyway. I did, however, love my job with the Schmoops. Found that while it doesn’t have much prestige and it sounds funny to say that this is my profession or career, nannying really is the right niche for me. Working with kids without the hassles of a school structure is great. I really enjoy working one-on-one with the kids and working with the parents to really support and nurture the kids. My job is to make myself indispensible while simultaneously rendering myself obsolete – I want to do such a good job with the kids that by the time I’m done, they really don’t need me anymore. That’s certainly true with the Schmoops and I left knowing that both girls were healthy and happy and totally ready for preschool and first grade and that I had at least helped them get there. Very satisfying.
  • Moved back to Providence. Hurrah! I love it here. It’s loud and weird, and that’s how I like it. Started work with Thing 1 & Thing 2. I’ve never been busier or happier in my life.
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