Thursday, May 26, 2011

Leaving the Pink Bubble

Have you ever experienced a moment in life so wonderful, that you wish you could find a way to alter the time-space continuum and just continue on in that moment forever? Honestly, I have not had this feeling many times. Even when I am enjoying myself, I am still thinking ahead, always knowing the feeling has an expiration date.

Last weekend however, I had one of those amazing, please don’t let this end moments. I was back at Sweet Briar College for my 5th year reunion (Holy smokes I am getting old, but let’s save that missive for another post). If you know me at all, you know I consider SBC (affectionately referred to as the Pink Bubble) a veritable heaven on earth. As of yet, it has been the best years of my life. I credit this amazing institution, its professors, and most importantly, all the incredible women I met there, to having given me the confidence to be who I am. There on the dell, stupidly dancing around with no fear of judgment, surrounded by friends, I remember thinking “Lord, please don’t let this end. If I could just stay in this one moment I would be truly happy.”

Oh course pure moments of bliss cannot last forever. Eventually the travel visa will expire and you must exit your Pink Bubble and rudely return to your real life. It has been hard since I have been back. Various conversations with friends and professors have forced me to acknowledge the surface buried truth that my life is not what I hoped it would be. Like countless other fresh-faced adults, I entered my career with the dream of making a difference. I never expected to be a world changer, but I thought I could do some good. I always loved the quote from E.M. Forester’s Room with a View:

"We cast a shadow on something wherever we stand, and it is no good moving from place to place to save things; because the shadow always follows. Choose a place where you won't do harm - yes, choose a place where you won't do very much harm, and stand in it for all you are worth, facing the sunshine."

Maybe it’s the permacloud covering Ohio, but I don’t feel like I am even living up to this quote. I live alone, I work alone, I drive thousands of miles, and am a glorified paper-pusher. Days come, days go, May turns to June. All in all, my existence if pretty unremarkable and this bothers me. Maybe it was childish to believe I could go to bed at night satisfied I had made a difference. Heck, I would settle for feeling that way once a month. I guess I am still looking for my place to stand with all my worth.