I just readthis New York Times article about the difficulties of making friends after 30. I am a proud 31 as of my last birthday and this is a very familiar problem for me. Sometimes I wonder if its "just me". Making friends started becoming difficult by my late 20's. I'm already pretty shy when it comes to new people and situations. I'm also a person who values a lot of "alone" time, but there is a fine line between that and actual loneliness... I experienced a very small window of time in my early 20s where I found myself a person who had lots of friends. Some of that time was exhilarating and some utterly exhausting. Ultimately though, I often miss the constant rush of creative energy you get when surrounded by like-minded people. I am now a person who has a very small circle of real true friends. I love those people very dearly and I wouldn't trade them for an army of casual friends, but I still wonder, why is it so difficult to expand that precious circle a bit?
I know it is true that as I've gotten older I no longer have the patience for trying to maintain friendships with people I feel I can never be close with. I used to be willing to put up with more drama, a touch more superficiality; but now I'm weary of it. I'm sure this is common for many, but I've experienced some pretty painful "break-up" with friends and betrayals of trust and love. It makes it harder and harder to start all over again.
I also used to develop more friendships with co-workers, but this has also becomes more difficult for some reason as I got older. The article I linked to above sites competition and financial status as contributing to this, but I'm not sure that's really the case for me. I have realized that in the past several years I have developed a very distinctive boundary between work-life and real-life. The work-me and the me-me. I'm not sure that I like that this has even happened, but when the two start to bleed into each other I find it very uncomfortable for some reason. At this point I don't even know how to change this.
I also think that being in your early 30's these days is almost as much of a transitional period as the early 20's were. Many people are waiting longer to get married and have children so there is often a big difference between many of us at this time. I've been in a committed long-term relationship for many years, but we have chosen not to marry just yet and the idea of babies is still several years off in the future. This can cause a HUGE divide with friends who have made different choices. If you aren't both able to adapt to the changes marriage and children bring to a friendship, its almost impossible for it to survive.
Today a huge part of our social interaction is on facebook, twitter, blogs, ect. Sometimes, if I'm sharing a story about someone I occasionally comment back and forth with on a blog, I will refer to that person as "sort of a blogging friend". How is it we even define "friend" anymore? Can we be good close friends with someone whom we have never seen face-to face, shaken hands with, or given a hug?
How have we become people with hundreds, if not thousands, of "followers" and social media "friends" but still have to join special organized meet-ups in order to find real human interaction? This is kind of crazy right? No matter what your age, I'm curious if you find it difficult to make friends these days too?
Summer has arrived at last! My tomato plants are spilling out all over the deck and I am so excited to anticipate having more than I know what to do with. This weekend I have been tending my rooftop garden, reading, and all-together nearly living on my deck. It has been glorious...
The sunsets lately have also been spectacular and I read from our local weather guru that this may be due to wild fires in Asia. It's extraordinary to think that such far away smoke has traveled so long across the sea to paint our evening sky...
The most exciting piece of the weekend, however, has been planning a trip! We have decided to head to Scotland in September and I am so excited! Edinburgh is my favorite city in the world so far. It's been nearly a decade since I've been there and I can't wait to return with one of my Favorite People in the world!
I've been mentally composing posts in my head all week. I especially want to talk about summer reading! More on that soon...
I have spent the last several weeks trying to mentally compose a "return post". I have spent way to much time thinking about it instead of writing a single word. I have a tendency to do this. I actually have to remind myself often, "Think less, DO MORE!"
And so, with far less ceremony than I foolishly imagined: I am back. For a long time I dreamed of starting a new blog somewhere else; writing wildly in the freedom of anonymity.
But really- I missed you all! I missed the friendships and connections I have made here over the last few years. I hope you are still reading.
It is so tempting to constantly yearn for starting fresh and new, but there is also something to be said for being content with where you began. So maybe sometimes I think my blog name is silly, many of my posts overly bland and "bloggy". Sometimes I cringe when I re-read and count the times I use "lovely" and "wonderful", but... Sometimes you just have to commit to what you began and work on getting better, right? I have a tendency to quit things and venture off where I can start over. It's not always a bad thing, but in this case I'm sticking with the Gypsea Tree.
Maybe the blog will take a totally new direction. I'm really trying to write more, so maybe I will add some short stories now and then. Maybe I will get political on the occasion or write about things that I really want to say, but in past haven't out of fear of offending or alienating. In the end, I feel like my old approach wasn't as genuine as I would have liked...
Over all I'm aiming to be a little more wordy and generally more personally creative.
The last time I posted was before Christmas! That seems like ages ago...
For at least twice as long I have been contemplating my blogging future and more importantly my writing future. I have loved blogging here, getting to know many of you, discovering your own blogging corners, and simply sharing a love for all things gypsy.
However, after a lot of thought (and procrastination) I've decided it's definitely time for me to ramble on to new adventures. I'm officially journeying away from the Gypsea Tree, but the blog will remain here for now. Who knows? Maybe one of these days I will stop back here again...
One of my great goals for 2012 was to get serious about writing.
I have long been planning a new blog in some new corner where I would publish some short stories. Maybe create a little online writing workshop community?
I don't plan on linking the new site here. I would like to keep it a little more anonymous for the time being, but if you are interested, please send me an email!
Thank you all for reading and leaving me so many kind and beautiful words over the years.
Happy happy year 2012. May all your dreams come true!
I hope you will keep in touch. I can still be found plenty of other places:
Steam Spectre- my Victorian/Steampunk/EdwardGorey image based blog
I woke up this morning to find it's 23 degrees outside! (and not too much warmer in!) its sunny and frosty and frozen. A perfect Sunday morning for reflection, a warm cup of hot coffee, buttery toast, and knitting.
I have been working six days a week for the last several weeks, but this weekend I got to enjoy a true two days off. It has been incredibly wonderful!
I have been thinking a lot about sticking to personal boundaries and protecting my ideal work/life balance...
I also woke up thinking about the illustrator Authur Rackham. I always feel that he so flawlessly captured the essence of fairy tales; the beauty and the darkness. His art can be at once breathtaking and unsettling. As a child I would study them for a very long time, feeling lost inside then and somehow challenged by thier complexity. It's funny, but only today did I realize what a huge role trees play in almost every painting. Perhaps another cause of fascination...
I hope you are enjoying a peaceful Sunday as well, wherever you are reading from today.