Friday, July 13, 2012

A Geographic Fix: Trying Something New

I lucked in to the worst job in Hollywood.

When your partner of 12 years decides he wants to try something new, and that something new is a whore named Ashley, you leave town so you don't commit a crime.  I drove out of the Phoenix desert and into an entirely different desert - the vast emotional abyss of Los Angeles.  I've done the geographic fix before, uprooting everything, abandoning my worldly possessions and taking flight into the great unknowns of other states, countries and continents.  I'm sure that says something about me, and read into it what you will, but this was the second time in my life I'd taken flight to LA.  I never considered it a place to hide, but a place to find myself.   That's what I wanted to do so desperately as I drove away from my husband and the pain of his betrayal. 

My ire, my desire for revenge, my spiteful and hateful wounded child spent plenty of time kicking around inside of my soul as I walked for endless hours through the streets of Hollywood, Santa Monica, and Venice. There were many moments of darkness and I am pretty sure that the time spent wallowing in that quagmire qualified as my lowest point in my life. I had moments of pure insanity, although it's hard to judge because my whole life has been lived on the tipped scale of mental imbalance. (Let's just call that "Daddy issues" for now.) But in all that darkness, all that resentment and pain, there was this steady drone; it was a bass line of self awareness, a quality of understanding that this is all a new beginning.

Now the Universe has a funny way of revealing itself to me and in so doing revealing me to myself. Each day I had to pick either living in a stuck place or moving forward through the sludge.  The days I picked moving forward made me a different person - physically stronger,  beautiful, patient, a little forgiving.  I didn't pick moving forward every day.  There were days when I picked living in pain.  I probably needed to do that so I could vent the steam in my boiling stomach.  And yet, no matter whether I chose pain or growth, the Universe gave me exactly what I needed in every moment of every day.  Often times my needs were presented in the words of wisdom of bus drivers or the person riding the exercise bike next to me at the gym.  The Universe gave me people I didn't even know I knew.

I don't want to quantify the gifts of the Universe, but in all the nuggets of wisdom and truth that were laid at my feet,  the best thing that happened to me was getting the worst job in Hollywood.  I was a tour guide on the double-decker buses parked outside of Grauman's Chinese Theatre.  Being a tour guide isn't such a bad job.  I like talking to people, I have a pretty sexy voice and people respond to my sense of humor, so it's a good fit for a gal like me.  But the only good part of the job was the actual guiding of the tours.  Without casting disparaging remarks on the company, I will say that they were inefficient, disorganized bastards.  I spent the majority of my time trying to find the bus I was supposed to be guiding, finding the people who were supposed to be on the bus, finding a microphone, finding a manager, fighting off other tour guides who were trying to steal my tour, and trying to appease customers who could see clearly that the company was Shyster Fest 2012.

Yes. The Universe gave me a job that was horrible.  Awful.  Terrible.  And exactly the right amount of job to keep me in limbo.  That job, had it worked out to be profitable, or for a company that was trustworthy and kind to its employees, could have changed the course of my life, allowing me to make choices that were not in my own best interest. Through new-found friendships and the wisdom of strangers, the Universe made me comfortable enough to see that my husband was not someone I could keep in my heart any longer.  Through the  low-wage, dissatisfying job I held, the Universe also made me uncomfortable enough to know that I had to return to my life, to stand up for my life.  The geographic fix was no longer the fix that would take me away from my problems.   I returned to Phoenix, and didn't the Universe give me exactly what I needed once again?  Within 24 hours of returning, there were so many supportive people - friends I didn't even know were my friends - pouring out love and compassion, giving me support and strength.

The Universe gave me the chance to try something new, and here I am, living in a new space.  It's still painful and things are uncertain, but I am picking to move forward in nearly every moment of every day.  I don't need a new geography; I have a new me.

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