Friday, December 01, 2006

Roughly 49 to Go

I went to a sheep roast/camping trip at the family ranch of my dear friend BDH this past weekend with 20 or so of his closest friends/neighbors/work associates. I had an absolutely phenomenal time. Here's the scene:

Let me just say, fresh roasted sheep on an open spit is delish! Mouthwatering, really. So tender and rare. The only thing that fazed me for a BRIEF second were the hooves still attached to the legs in the pan. BUT that didn't stop me from eating the delicious thigh meat!!!!

So yes, the food rocked, not to mention the fun we had camping. BDH is in his thirties, so being slightly older than me means that many of his contemporaries have small children. So of course, there were lots of young children running around with dirty faces and bare feet, not wearing pants. Dogs (who normally probably look well groomed in their homes) fought over carcasses and growled at each other with a wild look in their eyes. At one point, after a few beers, we climbed a rickety old ladder into an old water tank and pounded out primal rhythms with our hands and chanted. The stars in the sky were amazing.

At one point in the night, someone brought out their guitar (and BDH pulled out his accordion) and we all stood around the fire and sang songs. And this old Tracy Chapman song got pulled out of my distant memory--"Talking About a Revolution."

And it hit me. This is what I am missing in my life. Revolution, social justice in a Real Way, not just the lip service I toss around in my politically correct world. My friends in Tucson are and activists, working for change, full of idealism and ideas. I heard words and phrases tossed around that I had not heard since I left town---things like "sustainable development" and "straw-bale houses."

Where do I find that vibrancy here?

I have gotten complacent in my life, I think. I have become too self-righteous in my smug life, and I feel the tug of dissatisfaction. How is it that I no longer get my hands dirty in this world, but sit behind a desk and answer the telephone or on the couch watching TV?

Yes, I have a low income, I have financial responsibility, I have pets, I am busy. But these are not reasons for complacency. They are just excuses.

And I will not use them any longer.

This year has been hard. Living in a new, lonely city with a new husband who is gone more than he is home and a neurotic dog that eats everything is not ideal. But maybe what I am learning (every so slowly) is that life is never ideal, it just is. We all make compromises in our lives each and every day to do what we have to do to fill that void, whatever it is.

Like every year, I continue to be amazed at the generosity of my friends, who at this point are scattered across the United States. I rely on them for so much and so often, it feels like I am not able to adequately return the favor. You know who you all are and I love you so much.

So every year as my birthday nears, as I look back on my life, this year I am not satisfied. And so, I choose to look forward. I can no longer wait for my life to begin, but must begin to actually live it.

Today's Birthday Dec 1:
What a testament you are to your family. This year you take whatever legacy you were given and spiff it up until it shines. Accolades and applause follow! The winter smiles on your romantic realm. Your tenderness is appreciated. A February investment pays so well! Gemini and Aquarius people are contributors to your bottom line.

1 comment:

Allison said...

Hey - happy birthday!

I think that it's important to realize that while life is hard sometimes, it usually works out for the better because it makes you stronger(cliched enough?) It's very easy to become complacent, but be glad that you are one of the few that realizes that you can and want to make a difference.