I keep trying to plan my future, like I have a crystal ball and purple turban and a misguided faith in my ability to wield both. If I’ve learned anything, it’s that I know nothing. I have no idea what’s going to happen next year or next month or even next week. That’s okay, I like it. It keeps me moving and motivated and energized. I just have to stop trying to plan more than a month or two out. I keep saying I’ll do x until y happens. I may start with x but suddenly I’ve left the alphabet entirely and I’m on Pluto with a glass of orange juice wondering whatever happened to that crafty y. So I should really stop postulating and assuming and thinking I have any real say in the direction my life will take. The only thing I can decide is what happens now.
All this to say, my landlords have caused me some serious angst this week. One phone call on Monday and suddenly my whole life has been tossed up like confetti. I have to decide if I’m going to leave by September 1st or if I’m going to wage epic battle with the landlord. I made a video – because video messages are the best way to be weird with friends who live in other countries – and my face was pink because I’d burst into hysterical tears three times that day.
I was all set to fight the righteous fight, but after leaving messages all over the city and going to office hours and still not having any answers beyond an appointment on Tuesday (which is already halfway through the month, for anyone else who doesn’t understand how time works), I’m starting to wonder if this is life’s way of telling me I’m moving in the wrong direction. When things have been right, they’ve flowed smoothly. Getting this apartment was laughably easy. I decided I wanted to live by the beach in LA or San Francisco and something like thirty seconds later I had an apartment. Doing things only if they’re easy seems anti-American. But working hard isn’t the same as smashing your head into the same brick wall time and time again.
My hackles are raised. I want to give them hell. But maybe I need to get over it and realize that this is simply the world nudging me toward something better. Whenever I’ve left one thing, even something I’ve loved or was right for the time, I’ve always landed an upgrade. Sometimes it behooves you to rise above the anger and the injustice so that you can do what’s right for you. I’m not saying I know what’s right for me yet, but in all the grand leaps I’ve made, the net has always swooshed under me with admirable speed and fluffiness. Just because my last leap resulted in mayhem doesn’t mean that this one will. And just because it was mayhem doesn’t mean it wasn’t the right thing.
Right now, it doesn’t excite me to try to stay in this beautiful apartment, in this beautiful place. I’m more energized by the thought of spending a few weeks with my friends and family in San Francisco and then maybe going on that road trip through the South that I’ve talked about for years. Then maybe finding another place in LA. Or going to London for the fall. Or…see what I’m doing? Trying to plan months in advance, like I have any idea what’s happening. How quickly we forget the lessons of four paragraphs ago.
My apartment by the beach has always felt a bit impermanent, like I was only here until whatever my future held. But maybe my future is now.