I wake up to sounds.
Some days it was hearing the trickle of a creek next to my window or the rushing roar of a hot air balloon. Other days it was the quiet stillness of a midwest prairie with the hiss of the wind rustling the grass, or the steady crash of waves as the Pacific Ocean jumped its way onto the beach. The sounds were only one of the dimensions that came from living in an RV.
Recently I am waking up to different sounds. City sounds.
Super Mario is playing as someone’s alarm, a woman is giggling from the courtyard below, and another little dog starts barking so my own little dog wants to start a conversation. It’s strange to find myself in an apartment again.
I traded in my RV for a little more certainty.
After finding out just after Easter that Fischer had lymphoma, I couldn’t just let him go without trying to treat him. When treatments started, he was doing really well but the problem was that the treatments weren’t cheap. The life I had chosen as a full time musician was not always paying the bills and I would often have to make hard choices on the things I needed. Super gluing my glasses over again because I couldn’t afford a new pair and I was out of contacts. Or living without a fridge because it would cost too much to repair on what I was making. Little things that started to wear on me. Fischer was the big blow that made me decide I was ready to change my choices. So I started looking for a job.
Strangely, the decision to stay and to find a full-time job outside of music opened up more musical doors. Not only did I find an office job that I love but I suddenly had the opportunities to pick up gigs in the local area with wonderful musicians in a collaborative way. Ironically, those gigs starting paying better too. I started to feel like I was no longer trapped in the hamster wheel just trying to get by. I was enjoying life again.
If you had told me a year ago that I’d be living in a city apartment and loving it, I might have laughed at you. But here, I can walk to work in ten minutes and not spend hours of my life in the car. I can come home and see my dogs at lunch and give them my love. I can stretch out my arms without knocking on a wall, flush a toilet without worrying about the next time I have to empty the tanks, take a hot bubble bath to relax, cook full meals in a kitchen, and not worry about whether the battery will last in the night to kick on the heater in the dead of winter. I can have house plants that won’t get knocked over because I’m moving my home, and I can walk around without worrying about rocking the foundation. Best of all, I can take care of Fischer.
It’s in those moments of waking up to those sounds that I feel content. The noises are different with cadences and rhythms all their own creating a tapestry of the lives that are just on periphery of mine. Sometimes movement is necessary for experience but there are other times when it’s good to stop, sit still in the moment, and just inhale.