A series of small failures

in the cocoon
December 1, 2008, 2:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I’ve been extremely fortunate with certain things, like job offers, apartments, and houses — at least, I was in the past.  I kept getting wooed away to better and better journalism jobs, culminating with my staff writer job at Fortune. (FAIL: left it for a stupid dot-com).  While working at the San Jose Mercury, I decided to leave San Francisco and buy a house nearby.  I actually fell in love with the first house I looked at, on the first day of my search.  I wasn’t even qualified yet, didn’t have an agent, but made an offer that day, which was accepted.  I loved that house so much, in San Jose’s Rose Garden, with its fruit trees (apricot, pear, plum, meyer lemon, mission fig) and grape vines, and the huge backyard studio with its skylights and french doors. So, so beautiful. So many intentions, and so much love.

I sold that house five years later and used the proceeds to support myself while writing a book about growing up mormon (FAIL). The money lasted through most of the yoga and restaurant years. When it ran out, I cashed in my two IRAs. I looked at it as an early retirement, betting on myself and using the money to build something that i hoped could sustain me in the future. (FAIL!)

It’s unsettling to face having nothing. No job, no home, no savings — in an economy in which people are losing jobs, losing homes, losing their retirement. I’ve already lost all that. 

I’m grateful that my family has been so supportive. I’m not homeless. I have a beautiful place to live. But yes, I do want to get back out on my own. This is temporary. 

And yet, it doesn’t have to be negative. A new friend compared living with the parents to a yogic cave. I’m thinking of it as a cocoon.  A safe place to rest and move through a transformation. Eventually I’ll have to escape. Hopefully I won’t destroy it on the way out.


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My friend Summer (http://summerbray.blogspot.com/) and I were talking yesterday about times when we were feeling like our heads were down, and we agreed we wouldn’t undo them now, even if we could.

But if I could go back, I’d definitely think of it as cocoon time. That’s much cosier.

Comment by Erin Alberty

Looking back on life
I too feel like there have been
surely awful days.

Actions I regret.
decisions I can’t undo,
but I’m stronger now.

Even at my worst,
life has taught me when I would
pause to be present.

Looking back on life
I see those who helped me.
We all have karma.

Live for the present.
Stop to breathe and live again.
We all have Karma.

Comment by Tyler

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