I knew everything was going to change when I turned thirty and got married in two consecutive days. But I figured there was no reason to space out these major life events. Bring it on, I told myself. Let’s see what the future holds.
Then nothing changed. My husband and I had been together for a year and a half, and we had moved into a new apartment in the months preceding our wedding. I had already phased out my gaggle of guys and adjusted to a warm and easy routine of contented coupledom. I’d also gone through a ‘process of strategic career adjustment’ (as I deemed it) and was finally embedded in a creative day-to-day of reading about medieval art and philosophy, attempting to write plays, screenplays and novels, and playing music on my piano, flute and guitar.
My world had changed without my noticing it. I realized, with some shock, that I had changed as well.
What had happened to the flitting, pugnacious, amorous and shameless twenty-something lady I had been? How had she disappeared, fading away even from my mind, absolutely, and without saying goodbye?
I became introspective. I had changed, but how and into what? Who had I become?
My favorite English teacher had always said, “people don’t change, they just become more themselves.” I felt this observation to be true. I had evolved, or returned, to a more authentic version of myself. But I was caught pondering: How did the disparate decades of my life cohere? What the heck had I been doing then and what the hell was I doing now?
photo credit: Aisha Singleton Photography
Athanasius Kircher. The World is Bound with Secret Knots. Magneticum Naturae Regnum. 1667.