My misplaced identity

We’ve been here over a month now.  I’m finally getting used to Tucson.  It still looks like a wasteland when you drive around – huge wide streets, gravel, dead grass that grew last monsoon season and was never removed when it returned to desert condition.  The mountains are beautiful, but they’re often foggy and distant.

I’m getting used to doing nothing.  Nate actually asked me what I did all day today.  It’s not that hard, you guys.  I live in a one bedroom apartment with very little actual furniture.  We have so little “stuff” that cleaning is a joke.  The only thing that actually takes any time is doing dishes.  We have a dishwasher, but too few dishes to make use of it efficiently.  I basically do nothing all day.

It’s been difficult to admit that I do nothing.  The last time I had this little to do I was probably 12 years old.  Even then, my Mom kept us pretty busy during the summer, and imagination and free play is way more acceptable when you’re 12 than when you’re 26.  I went from being employed full time straight out of college to being unemployed.  I spend my days inside my dark, empty, tiny, one bedroom apartment.  I have a list of really tedious things that need to be done, lots of making phone calls that never get returned.

For the first few days we were here, I would get up, shower, put on my brand new shorts (I never needed shorts before!  I was always working in the air conditioning and I had a few sun dresses for the weekends, or gym shorts, or I’d just wear my jeans), do my hair and my makeup.

Now I  try to wake up at a reasonable time (the sun comes up REALLY early here, its usually pretty light out when Nate gets up at 5:30) putter around for a while.  I’ve started going to the gym.  It’s kind of far away, so by the time I get there, work out, and drive back, its usually been at least 2 and a half hours.  Sometimes I dry off for a while, slather on my sunscreen, and go lay by the pool.  For one hour.  Mandatory.  30 minutes on my belly, thirty minutes on my back.  Try not to get the library book soaked.  Sometimes I just hang out inside.

I read a lot.  The library is my new best friend.  I got twelve books out of the library and I’ve finished six.  Only one book was from my reading list of classics.  I try to have dinner ready every night when Nate gets home from work.

Writing about all this, I hardly feel sorry for myself.  It all sounds like a grand vacation.  But a vacation with no end in sight.  And I’m not a sit-still person.

By the time Nate gets home from work, I’m crabby.  I’m crabby and he’s jealous that I’ve been sitting around all day, and we have nothing to do but sit and crab at each other.  At first, we would go out and buy something just to get out of the house.  It was awful.

That lasted for about a week.  Then we gave in and bought an X-Box and a little TV.  As much as I complained about video games before, I never would have guessed that they probably saved our marriage.  We got one with a Kinect, so sometimes we play funny little games together.  But usually Nate plays with his friends online while I continue puttering – reading or writing or finding one of the many other ways I have to entertain myself.  I have to say, there was no such thing as “bored” in my parents’ house.  “Bored” was not allowed then, so it makes it very difficult for me to be bored now.  And that has really come in handy.

We’re going back to Ohio for a wedding this weekend.  I really can’t believe it’s been so long since we moved!  I’m super excited to sleep in my own bed, with my own pillows that fit the shape of my head perfectly.  And then all of our stuff will be packed up and stored in an undisclosed location (seriously, they won’t store it in Tucson because it’s too hot) until we figure out what we’re doing with our living situation.

Maybe tomorrow I’ll give a tour of our apartment.  Ha!  It probably won’t be very exciting, but at least it will give me something to do!

It’s kind of funny, after some of my previous posts about being overwhelmed and over extended that I am now with almost nothing to do.  It has been nice to regroup and take some time to reevaluate what I really want to be doing and what is important to me.  But I think I will have to get a job soon or I might go crazy.

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