This Is Not My Beautiful Life. Or, Is It?

It seems like lifetimes ago that Toby Joe and I were living in D.C. It seems like a lifetime ago we then picked up everything and moved to San Francisco. And it seems like not so long ago we were packing everything back up and moving back to New York City. And it seems that as I remember it all, I’m making it all up.

Toby Joe and I have moved five times since we met. That includes once while living in New York City (the first time.) It includes twice during our time spent in D.C. It includes two cross-country moves; one to San Francisco and one back to New York. As it states in the About Section of this Web site, Toby Joe and I have moved a lot. In just four short years we have moved more than some folks do in a lifetime.

Yesterday, it occurred to me that on November 22nd of last year we began our move back across the United States. I remembered this because as the Thanksgiving Holiday draws near, I remembered that last year we held our Thanksgiving dinner at a Cracker Barrel in Indiana.

Because of all our moving, we’ve had the opportunity to meet some of the most amazing people. Sadly, we’ve also had to say goodbye to them. While living in D.C., more specifically in Adam’s Morgan, I frequented a yoga studio called 18th and Yoga. (Now, it’s called Inspired Yoga.) I took classes there for a year straight. Toby Joe and I even flew to Turks and Caicos for a weeklong yoga retreat. While studying yoga with Kyra, I met some of the kindest people during the 31 years I’ve spent alive. Some of whom I still desperately try and keep in contact with.

This morning, I received a mass email from Inspired Yoga. They mentioned that this year they’d be traveling to Hawaii for the annual retreat. After reading about what everyone there is up to, I felt a wave of bittersweet sadness compress me. So much has changed over the past several years, it’s as if parts of my life were merely memories I adopted after reading an extraordinarily vivid novel. Parts of my life just don’t seem real to me. And I’m left wondering if that’s normal.

Today, after I convinced myself that Kyra was indeed someone I not only once knew but was also someone who meant the world to me, I decided to break time’s silence and write her an email. There is a part of me who wants to fly to Hawaii this February and join them all, try and relive that part of my life as much as I can. And then there is another part of me who is terrified of revisiting a period of time I can no longer get to.

Mike and Dee arrive today from San Francisco. Their existence and the fact they are visiting us pretty much proves that I actually did once live there. This realization surprises me time and time again.

As people exit your life, whether they pass away or they grow tired of you or you of them, does that extraction work to blur or erase life’s film a little bit? Is one’s history better set with the proof of other people?

I want to remember to not forget that these experiences, while distant, are indeed my own. I want to keep people with me no matter how far we move or how long it’s been. And I place shame on myself for not raising my hand more.


  1. I feel much the same. Sitting over here in dark and quiet Detroit, it sometimes feels like i’ve never been anywhere else. Especially because i’ve been out of touch lately (no internet at home, stupid busy at work, packing and moving… again). It hit me on this last move when Mitch asked how many different apartments Blondie has lived in. She is 8-people-years-old and has had 9 different homes (if you count the 3 months with my parents when i was getting settled in Brooklyn). This may explain her separation anxiety and a few other behavioral issues. So what has it done to me???


  2. ginar should move back to bklyn already. that’s me being selfish and all but…


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