I think it’s time I dust off this catacomb of thought. When I started it in 2010, I had just graduated college and had no idea what to do with myself. Scripted Scenes & Coffee Beans was a way to keep writing, to share with far-away friends and family, and document my journey into adulthood. A quick scroll to my “Older Joes” will show you how that’s gone.
But the absence of entries is not an absence of life. In fact, quite the opposite. My life has been bursting and brimming with substance the last three years as I’ve grown professionally and creatively and allowed my dreams to crystalize a little, and now I find myself in much the same position as I was in 2010…at the beginning of a new chapter having no idea what to do with myself. 🙂
So it seems fitting I would return here now to keep writing, sharing with far-far-away family and friends, and documenting my journey into the entertainment business as a writer.
Moving clear across the country to pursue a dream brings with it a lot of introspection and a potent cocktail of emotion. So before I sober up and settle in with my 8-5, Starbucks, happy hour, networking, dream-building California life, allow me some transparency.
This is hard. And admitting that it’s hard is even harder. This is my dream. This is what I’ve worked for, prayed for, fought for, and uprooted for. I never said it would be easy, yet I can’t cut myself a break when the distance bruises me to tears and the sense that I’m a third wheel in my own life hollows me out from the inside.
“Great!” I say when friends and family ask how things are going. Because outwardly, they are. I have a great job (!) and generous friends who didn’t even kick me out after a month. I’ve been to some really cool places, met some great new people, reconnected with old friends, and made some quality contacts for the future. I have nothing to complain about.
I wake up every morning, realize where I am, and say “Oh my God, I actually did it.” I actually left Virginia Beach where I was known and loved and cared for and where Hubs and I had built something of a life that, to the outsider, was only just beginning. And I dug it up and transplanted it to another planet. (And trust me, when you’re born and bred on the East Coast, California may as well be another planet.)
It’s a strange sensation because this is the fulfillment of so many dreams and the seed of so many more to come. Yet I’m not gleefully Instagramming my way through my #LAlife because it doesn’t feel like mine yet. And that’s…unexpected. Instead, I’m busy trying to make sure I’m doing enough to get where I want to go and comparing my “start” to the friends I know who have made the same jump with seemingly different results (This is an extremely helpful and healthy practice, of course).
So how am I? I’m happy, anxious, excited, nervous, confused, lonely, and above all, grateful to be here.
I’m great, but I’m homesick. I’m great, but I’m secretly scared I made a terrible mistake and will ruin everything. I’m great, but the pressure to get it right makes my chest tight sometimes.
One day, hopefully soon, the flood of photos and cutsie captions on social media will resume. But for now, I’m taking it all in and figuring it out. California, you’re like a new pair of jeans. I’m confident the more I wear you, the more comfortable you’ll become, but doggone it if you aren’t pinching my thighs at the moment.