I know it’s traditional to be reflective this time of the year, but honestly, I think I am in between every semester. It’s the only time I seem to slow down enough to think, and thinking can’t be rushed. I’m probably particularly reflective because I hit a milestone in my trips around the sun this year, and because this is the last full semester of classwork coming up. It has left me in this peculiar space of partly feeling like big changes are coming, and partly not.
I feel like I should be preparing for some big turning of my world on the inside out, and yet feel as though I have no indication what those changes might be. But the flip side of that is knowing too well what changes are coming, and so deluding myself into thinking it will be no big deal. In another 6 months, I’m moving again. And even though it’s to a familiar place, it still means packing up all my belongings, tugging free what tendrils have rooted, and trying to retransplant. And the truth is, that will happen almost every 2 months for about 3/4s of a year. Surely that’s enough change for anyone.
But maybe trying to gear up for that season of rapid transition is part of the feeling of getting started on something new–I can’t dwell on that much shape-shifting. It’s hard enough to get through it without holding your breath for a year, so I find myself mentally “skipping over” that chapter and trying to figure out what comes next. The reality is that would be trying to divine what is going to be happening more than a year from now, and of course that doesn’t make sense. So mentally and emotionally, I think I’m trying to prepare for “what comes next” as though it would be forming during this semester and happening during this summer. But knowing that, in reality, that’s not so — well, it really puts a damper on one’s planning, I can tell you that.
It feels a good deal like spinning wheels — gearing up to get moving very quickly, yet going nowhere. I looked through seed catalogs the other day, but I’ll be spending the first half of the gardening season in one state, and the other half of the gardening season in another state. I’ve finally found a choir I enjoy singing in, but that will be over when I move, and there’ll be no looking for replacements for at least a year.
There’s a feeling of helplessness, I think, in being unable to plan. It’s not that everything ever has to go according to plan, but it’s just that there’s no bracing yourself for what comes next, or carving out a little piece of something to look forward to.