If it’s one thing that’s sure to trigger a panic attack for me it’s moving.
I could never handle moving. Before I first moved with my family to Wichita, I spent my last day in my childhood home sobbing. This hasn’t changed. Each time I’ve moved, I’ve melted down.
It all plays into the anxiety, you see. Change isn’t something people with anxiety like. And when you’re moving house, well, that’s stressful and upsetting and it’s CHANGE.
So when I moved to New Mexico, I made the biggest change of my short life.
I’ve been living in New Mexico since August 2016. Prior to that, I spent my entire life in Kansas. Shit, I even have a tattoo outline of that state on my left forearm (completely impulsive, a Lady Gaga song drove me to do it, but I love it. The tattoo. The Lady Gaga song too, but mostly the tattoo). Moving to New Mexico felt like a natural progression of things. I mean, it’s no secret that for years I would sigh morosely and say, “Oh, I want to move to the desert. I want to leave Kansas and move to the DESERT.” I was also listening to A LOT of The Killers. Like, more than a lot. Like so much that I began to idealize desert living and pea farming. My boo moved to New Mexico about a year before I did and I followed behind him as soon as I felt emotionally able to – and as soon as I found a sweet new job.
But oh boy, the move itself was a nightmare. My best friend Amy and my partner – henceforth know in this blog as The Male – they felt the move was smooth sailing. The Male and I took the U-Haul, my bestie was following behind in my car with my supremely drugged-up cat and every time we stopped for gas, I would open the passenger door of my Suzuki and I would look at my doped up cat. His eyes were obscured by his silvery-white inner eyelids and his nose was wet and warm, and he greeted me with his “ewww, ewww, ewww” pathetic stoned mewling. And I would melt down.
“Sarah, what’s wrong? Ozzie is okay. We’re okay. This is fine, we’re almost there,” The Male would say gently.
“BUT BUT BUT BUT BUT HE’S OH MY GOD LOOK AT HIS EYES!” I would bawl.
“Sarah, he’s high as fuck.” Because you know, I had his vet prescribe him low-doses of Kitty Valium to handle the move and seeing his wigged out state really REALLY upset me.
This went on for about 10 hours, from the moment we left Wichita to the moment we pulled into The Male’s driveway in the forgotten crackpipe that is Rio Arriba county. And the second we opened the door I flung myself onto his bed and began bawling. Like someone stole my Balenciaga bawling. Like Bono just died bawling. Like…you get the picture.
Of course Ozzie came down from his trip and I unpacked my things and a week later I began my new job and I felt…good. Better than good. I felt that this was HOME. My home was New Mexico. I never wanted to return to Kansas ever again.
Until I wanted to return to Kansas again.
The homesickness crept in slowly, curling around my black insides like a fog. And then…
“I miss Kansas,” I muttered.
“But why? You’re happy, you’re making more money than you ever did in Kansas. And you’re finally out of there, isn’t that what you want?” The Male asked.
“I don’t know.”
Because I’ll be absolutely frank. I don’t know. I don’t know what I want or who I am. One of my favorite books growing up was Dangerous Angels, a collection of the first five Weetzie Bat novels by Francesca Lia Block. And one of the characters, a small girl named Witch Baby, used to ask herself “what time are we upon and where do I belong?” Good question, fictional character with emotional issues! Good question!
Suddenly, I feel like maybe this isn’t the proverbial home my soul needs. But really, I have it made. I do have a great job and The Male is gorgeous and accepts me for all my neuroses. But is it home?
I don’t think home exists. When I packed up and moved, I thought NEW PLACE NEW ME! But my problems followed me. My anxiety followed me. The fears I had in Kansas that worried away at my brain followed me. Now they’re New Mexico fears!
Don’t get me wrong. I love New Mexico. Yet I still have this empty feeling far in the pit of my stomach that says “Kansas wasn’t home. New Mexico isn’t home. And you won’t find home until you get to the bottom of your issues.”
I guess I’m a refugee in my own mind.
So I suppose like an adult I’m supposed to step into my big girl diapers and face my issues. Or else I’m going to end up back in Kansas where good paying jobs are non-existent and Brownback is doing all he can to – OKAY THERE IS NO POLITICS IN THIS BLOG.
THIS IS NOT A POLITICAL BLOG.
THIS IS A SARAH BLOG.
So I’m supposed to step into my big girl diapers and face my issues. I will over time. I’m sure. I guess. Maybe. Oh look a quarter.
The Male and I moved out of Rio Arriba county and into Santa Fe county, in Santa Fe itself. Santa Fe is something else, I tell you what. It’s quirky. Not Wichita quirky, more like ancient quirky. There is an ancient quirkiness in the air. And I do like it. But I just don’t feel like it’s HOME quite yet.
I hope that feeling comes.
But until then I suppose I’ll just feel like an old Tom Petty song, played on vinyl.