Although I was here (in Denver) for the changing of the seasons last year, somehow it all feels very new and fresh to me this time around. The colors are so vibrant, the temperature changes so drastic, and the sentimental feelings so poignant.
Something about this year has transformed me. I can see it in the distance between the girl I was this time last year and who I’ve become. I can see it in the increase of professional duties I’ve taken on at my job. I can see it in my perception of the world around me, a complicated mix of adult wisdom with childlike naivete rolled into one.
I woke up feeling discontent, which frequently happens on mornings I don’t have plans yet. It seems like such a waste, to have 48 beautiful hours of freedom away from my desk and email and project list, and then spend them piddling around the apartment, not really doing nothing but not really doing anything. Does cooking a few meals and dealing with a radiator flooding my bedroom (ugh) count as productivity?
In truth, it’s not been as bad as I’m making it out to be. I spent Friday night with a few of my coworkers partying away the stressful week at a Mos Def concert at Cervantes, which somehow led to a late-night feast at Pete’s Kitchen at like 3:00 in the morning. I literally can’t remember the last time I had late night munchies like that and indulged them. So good.
And yesterday I fought back frostbite on a frigid, snowy day at the Chipotle Cultivate Festival in City Park. It was a day festival complete with music, local beer, and artisan food, but unfortunately the weather just didn’t want to cooperate. In the most extreme weather shift I’ve ever experienced, it went from sunny, 80, and cloudless on Wednesday to snowy and frigid on Friday and Saturday. The high was like, 36.
We did manage to enjoy ourselves with some delicious beers (new favorite!), free samples, and rockin’ tunes from Grouplove. 2 shows in 24 hours, boom. We were so frozen afterwards I couldn’t bring myself to venture back out into the cold for the night, so that’s when I decided to stay in and discovered my radiator was leaking puddles into my bedroom.
I’ve said this before, but generally life is so interesting and busy that I forget to enjoy the slow, solo days and instead berate myself for not being social. This is the biggest and probably worst change I’ve developed since moving out here. Back in Nashville, I spent quite a lot of time alone and enjoyed it immensely. I found it to be therapeutic, refreshing, and pleasurable. I sought it out.
My life is Denver is now so constantly and reliably packed with activity, excitement, and socializing that I think I’ve forgotten how to enjoy time alone. I used to tout the phrase “I’m my own best friend” as a source of pride, and now I really don’t feel that way anymore. Is that a bad thing? I’m not really sure.
I think this past year has been an ongoing demonstration of my ability to adapt, adjust, and change. I think it’s a huge source of frustration to me, feeling like those around me are already so set in their ways, so sure of their futures, so positive about their paths, while I’m still working out my course. I don’t particularly feel assured of who I am or who I’m going to be. I feel pliable and flexible and influenceable and moldable.
My boyfriend commented on this. His observation was that I became obsessed with Mumford & Sons after seeing them at my happy place, Red Rocks, for free with a vendor from work. The truth was that I was really indifferent to them before that night, but after witnessing them perform the best live show I’ve seen probably ever, I can’t stop listening. (The new album, Babel, has been on repeat.)
I guess I don’t know where this is going except into another quarter-life crisis existential musing that I seem so fraught with these days. Why don’t I have all the answers yet? Waaaah.
All I know is that at least there’s a cure: a long walk outside in the brisk air. Off to lace up my sneakers!