This weekend Vanessa and I went to a concert with some friends at a local bar. The headliner was Melissa Ferrick. I’d never heard Melissa Ferrick, but I got the impression that her music was Indigo Girls-ish, and I figured I’d like it. After the first couple of songs it occurred to me that while this kind of music is lovely, I don’t crave it the way I did in college and for much of my 20s when I felt I was always struggling with something– struggling against my parents and their disapproval of my lifestyle, struggling against a partner who was not right for me and with whom I could grow no further, struggling against my weight, wrestling my own definitions of success, fighting something I mistook for shyness that made it difficult for me to relate to other people but that I now realize was not social awkwardness but the perfectly healthy response of an introvert to the extroverts with whom I was surrounding myself. In short, the music was angst-ridden, and I no longer crave this kind of music because I don’t identify with it anymore. I am no longer angst-ridden.
So ever since I’ve been feeling very satisfied with myself and the adult that I’ve become who is “comfortable in her own skin ” and no longer desperately (and fearfully) searching for identity. I feel successful, and I don’t have any problems that seem insurmountable. Like any other couple, Vanessa and I occasionally face challenges. Depression creeps in. Our jobs overwhelm us. There’s a family crisis. A car breaks down. We work through it, and the world doesn’t stop turning. No one threatens to break up. Drama doesn’t taint our relationship. I remain in love with her, and she could only be more perfect for me if the dishes were done when I got home (hint hint).
And then this morning I get in my car and turn on the stereo. Bursting out of the speakers comes Kid Fears by the Indigo Girls. Vanessa drove my car last– Vanessa, who only very rarely gets the urge to listen to the Indigo Girls. Because I am lazy I do not change the CD, and a few minutes later– Watershed. Watershed is the song that propelled me to leave the comfort of what I knew to accept the job offer at my current company 5 1/2 years ago, which has been mostly good for me:
Up on the watershed, standing at the fork in the road
You can stand there and agonize till your agony’s your heaviest load.
You’ll never fly as the crow flies, get used to a country mile.
When you’re learning to face the path at your pace every choice is worth your while.
Jeez. It’s so cheesy, I’m embarrassed to be so effected by it. Anyway, it made me wonder if I’m holding myself back (this time holding both me and Vanessa back) by continuing down this road of trying to conceive. Am I robbing us of time with our children by avoiding the adoption option? I allowed myself to consider it and then took a detour through the carwash to allow time to pull myself together before work, since I still cannot consider the possibility of not carrying a child inside me without sobbing. Perhaps there is some angst left after all.