I'm still here. It's just...on several occasions I've sat down to write, and found myself staring at an empty screen for quite some time.
Do you ever do that...realize you have absolutely nothing to say?
Or maybe realize that the things you have to say are in no way uplifting or exciting...they're a little sad or dull. So you tuck them away; you sort them out quietly with friends or loved ones, hoping the feelings pass and are replaced with something sunnier. But when those thoughts don't pass...it begins to feel like you're indefinitely holding your breath underwater.
And frankly, after ten months, I've reached that point here in Kuwait. There's something about this country that makes me feel I'm almost out of air...like I have nothing left in me. It's not the all-out sadness that plagued me shortly after moving here, but rather a sense of not being where I should be, of missing out on opportunities that could lead to something bigger. A sadness over being distanced from those I love. There are days I worry that life is passing me by, because I'm geographically in the wrong place to do the things that make me feel alive, and have spent months as creatively dry as the desert outside my window.
I don't run around sharing these jumbled thoughts with the general population of this country, but every time I meet someone new, they're bound to ask if I like it here. It's hard to delicately express my thoughts, both online and off, because without fail another expat in Kuwait will quickly ask, "Why don't you like it? You can do XYZ here! And we have all the American stores like Gap, Pottery Barn, etc...." or starts ticking off ways I can learn to like it here, starting with: "You can always go to Dubai!"
It's kind of them to care...but tricky to respond. Why doesn't a person like brussel sprouts? Or the color orange? Why do some people love one city, while others loathe it? It just doesn't suit their taste. It doesn't inspire them. No need to convince them to love it or assure them that they'll learn to like it in another year.
It's okay if we don't all love the same things. It's perfectly normal for us to have different inspirations! Really!
I'm not looking for answers. I've been here long enough and know myself well enough to uncover the "constant" behind all my jumbled feelings: I'm simply not inspired here. Every time I step foot outside this country--Destination: Anywhere But Here--I feel reinvigorated. Alive again. And not just a "vacation invigoration", but rather something makes me want to live again. A million thoughts go through my head...I want to start a business, to write regularly, to do something big + creative with my life. Crazily enough, in that moment I believe I can do those things, too. But within a day or two of returning to Kuwait...that energy and those dreams all disappear.
So, I've entered a period of holding my breath. I'm just waiting. Waiting for something else to come along for us...waiting for the next phase of life. Everything in me is so ready to move on, and to start a new life in a place I can breathe...somewhere I can rediscover that girl who used to wake up and really love life....even on the tough days.
And while my relationship with organized religion is difficult and therefore a topic rarely addressed in this space...my relationship with God is less difficult. And so I'm just waiting for him to show us what's next...
...and wondering if he can put a "rush" order on that request.