Back in Santa Cruz Again

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If anyone's been paying attention, you'll know I'm in Santa Cruz, CA, again right now. Got myself tickets for a week-long trip out here for only $50 each way (thank you, Southwest Airlines!), so I figured why the hell not?

It's so strange being back here. I missed everybody so much but now that I'm here it's so hard to arrange to see everyone I want to without making it way too structured for me. I hate making plans more than a few hours in advance, and when you don't live somewhere that's just kind of way too much for your friends to deal with. Just kind of sucks, because I love these people and I want to see them all, but I can't really do that unless I'm just sorta here often enough that they can fit seeing me into their routine.

All this brings up a lot of thoughts that I've been having for the past couple of months that I've not really committed to paper just because I haven't wanted to, but now's a pretty good time to do it. I feel sort of trapped in my life right now, and I want out. Some background first....

In the beginning, when I started college at the urging of my entire family, I wanted to study art and computer science/engineering. That really didn't pan out 'cause my computer science classes took up so much of my time I didn't even really have time for general education classes much less another major. I'd always been really good at art, though, as a kid and I wanted to get some actual training and maybe be able to go after design/programming jobs post-college. I'm kind of jumping ahead of myself here though. The truth is that my art interest faded to a distant yearning while I was in computer science because I simply did not have the time to pursue it. I only started making time for my art after my dad passed away.

When dad died, I was pretty well devastated even though I'd known for a few months that it wasn't going to be long. No amount of preparation can really ease you into losing a loved one. Anyways once he died I had to think of a course of action for coping with it. I gravitated to my oldest passion: photography. I got myself into the kresge darkroom co-op, bought a pentax k-1000 and a bunch of film, and just hit it. So I got back into things. Moving to Chicago I started drawing again because I was tired of not drawing. I kept having al these ideas and no time and no resources and no space to do them in. It's so frustrating!

So that brings us up to date. I'm kind of on the brink over here. I'm going to turn 24 this summer and it makes me think . . . I need to be doing or have done something amazing by the time this time of year rolls around again. At 25 I want to be able to point to something that's mine, that I created or helped create, that people use and love and is a part of their lives. I want to revolutionize something—I said that a couple of years ago, I remember, when Jessi and I were talking about the future. (I miss her optimism in those days sometimes.) I dunno if I feel like I'm still on-schedule or not. Chicago just seems like such a huge setback sometimes, like I somehow abandoned what I really wanted to and needed to do by not taking a programming job of some sort (my brain feels like it's starving) and by not having enough time for my artwork. I just feel like working and living in Chicago I've made so many compromises. I'm not working on my own schedule, I'm not even sleeping on my own schedule.

I don't even know why I'm writing all this right now, and on this blog, too. This is supposed to be my blog for writing about my hardcore web developer lifestyle, but somehow I don't really feel like I'm living that right now. I have fewer and fewer little bits of awesomeness to share on here, and that makes me sad. Being back in Santa Cruz makes me realize that in Chicago I'm just so far removed from my support system, my friends, so many of the people I love. Keep realizing there are more than I thought when I left, too, and that's been saddening me a little too.

I'm gonna go get myself together. See you later, space cadets.