I’ve been back in Hawaii for a day and a half now…
Yesterday I unpacked; today I’m diving straight into looking for work. That was always the plan, but also it feels like I’m keeping myself busy in order to not have time to be sad about being home and leaving my friends behind.
The last days in Washington were a bit of a emotional roller-coaster; some unpleasant issues arose that I hadn’t expected, but they were counter-balanced by some people being awesome that I also hadn’t expected. And in a way, that made leaving a little bit worse, because my time in Washington was filled with awesome people. I felt at home in a way I don’t — and haven’t — in Hawaii, or much of the time I was living in Seattle, or even back in Idaho when I was growing up. I felt like I was “among my people”.
But at the same time, even though I’m not going to see most of them again for a year, I feel so much happier and more comfortable and confident in myself now that I got to spend time with them in the first place. Just knowing there’s somewhere I can belong makes not being there that much easier.
The past year in Hawaii, I had a lot of healing and processing and growth to do. It was a lot of solitary internal work that I needed to focus on, so I didn’t mind that I didn’t really have a “peer group” on the island. I wasn’t ready for a social life of my own, so being around the social life of my parents was enough of that sort of interaction, for the most part. I didn’t miss having friends of my own very much, because at that point I wasn’t used to them and couldn’t see the benefit.
Well, that’s certainly changed now!
As I talked about before, being back in Washington was a way to open up that growth and processing a little, to compare it to where I was at when I started. I was able to see my progress, see which parts were healed over into shiny new scars, which were still scabs, and which were still painful to poke at. I was able to honestly talk to friends about what I had gone through, which I hadn’t done before I left. I could assimilate and integrate the work I had done on my own, with the surroundings and people I had to leave behind to do it.
And I could start to make new friendships, renewed relationships, and fresh associations and memories. It was probably the healthiest, most rewarding, funnest three weeks I’ve had in years, if not ever. I’m grateful for all of it, even the parts that were difficult, because it taught me just how much I’ve come into my own and how much I’ve gained in the last year, and in the last five years.
Even though I miss being around friends, I’m excited to see where my life goes now, what opportunities and adventures arise in the next year, and the year after that. I have no idea what’s going to happen, but I have a feeling it will be good…
Love to you all, cyber-friends.