A while ago, I posted about my dramatic impending change of lifestyle, otherwise known as Deanna Moves to Paris. If you missed the boat, get up to speed by reading this.
The older I get, the more futile my efforts to organise my life seem to be. At times my existence seems to be a dripping piece of clay. No matter how hard I try to mould it into a structured form, it sinks into a shapeless mass and runs between my fingers.
The past few months have tried me. I am not easily cowed, but there are times when all struggles seem in vain, and unhappiness is coupled with the misery of being unable to change the situation.
I finished university back in May. Official graduation is set for October, but all the work is over, I know my grades, and that chapter of my personal chronicle is a coffin closed and buried.
I have spent the last few months trying to organise myself for what lies ahead, and have utterly, utterly failed.
It’s August, and here I am, sitting on the same old computer in my parents’ house, in a little village where nothing of great consequence has ever happened, and I suspect, nothing ever will.
The plan was Paris by the end of the month. The long-term goal of getting there remains, but here I am, with no Parisian accommodation, work, or means. I have missed the train of my planned life, and need to find a new way to navigate the uncharted territory of the world beyond.
I have deferred my MA to 2017, which means I have over a year to get myself sorted, and this time there will be no excuses. I was hoping to be an au pair, but thanks to scheduling conflicts with the school run, that’s just not going to happen. Plan B: The Resurrection of a Dream, is to teach English.
In a strange, Benjamin Button turn of events, I am going to live the next two years backwards, by becoming first an independent career woman, and then returning to the stress and misery of student life.
It’s not what I wanted to do. At the moment I’m spending most evenings trying to master the complexities of English grammar, something which even a Creative Writing degree doesn’t give you much of an upper hand with. It’s not fun, and it’s not ideal, but it’s what I have to do. Life is, intrinsically, chaos.
But that’s okay.
For a moment I thought I was up to my waist in mud, and sinking, but now I’m back on track.
Life does not promise to live up to your expectations. Often, it seems to involve an awful lot of ‘I’ve made it’ moments that are followed swiftly by disaster. Its mainstays are tears, and hollows inside your chest that linger like an illness.
Life is, I think, a kamikaze dive through one moment of light in the infinite blackness. It’s going to be messy, cruel and hard, but beyond that it’s going to be an adventure.
And adventures aren’t had by sailing calm waters. They’re about storms, about twisting your sails against the tempest, feeling the rain lash your face, and clinging to the wheel even if your hands are bleeding.
Nothing worth having comes without its share of pain, so for now I’ll keep going. I won’t be Sleeping Beauty, but the knight hacking through the thicket. I will hurt, and plough on, and I will get there in the end, because if nothing else, the prospect of not living this dream has only made me realise how much I want it to become a reality.