I haven't talked a lot about Athens, and living here. I think it's because I've had a hard time putting into words my feelings about this town and our move here. Yesterday H said something to me that summed up how I felt. He said "It's not really the people in a place that make me happy. I see the places where we live as the backdrops for our story." And that resonated with me so much that I carried it tucked away so that I could write about it when I had a chance.
Athens is a wonderful town. I love the feel and look of it. The funky downtown filled with little stores, bars and eateries is an amazing way to spend a Saturday. I love the tree lined streets and the grand old houses. I love how we can walk just about anywhere. I love that everything is so close. Our little house is perfect for us. We spend evenings curled up on the couch (finally big enough for us all) and read, knit and watch movies. I love that there is lots for us to do here from hiking trials to Girl Scouts. The Catholic Center at UGA has become a safe place for me to explore my new found faith. This is a charming back drop no doubt.
But I've also struggled with feeling lonely. My expectations may have been too high for this place but I had imagined we would meet lots of fun, intelligent, engaged people here in Athens. I had these plans for family gatherings where we adults would sit and talk while the kids ran around and played. Umm...not so much. I"m sure there are these kinds of people here but they either don't have kids or they have one or two. Our big family seems to freak them out. The other mothers here all know each other and it's hard to break through years of friendship to make a place for yourself. I've reached out a few times and while the offer was accepted, it seems that the initial excitement frizzled.
For awhile I blamed myself and wallowed in a pity party about what an awful person I may be. But as time stretches out I am able to see that it's not my fault. I know there are things about me that make me hard to take. But I also know that there are things about me that make me a great friend. I am not sure though how one gets that across to people. I've also though a lot about what I'm looking for in a friend or even if it's quantity that I'm after. I've meet a few people whom I think I will end up becoming friends with, and so far the tiniest sprouts are there. At this stage, I am focusing on nurturing those bits of green without compromising myself in the process.
Thus this is the story. Beautiful town on which to continue to write the story of the beasties. I'm sure that eventually other characters will float through, adding to our narratives. Meanwhile I bask in this wonderful place and find myself thankful for the closeness I have within my own home.