It’s been awhile since I’ve written… life is chugging right along on, having jumped the tracks and now careening wildly in a new direction. I think I have a bit of whiplash.

I’m finding that I’m quickly disengaging from life at Twin Oaks, whether I want to or not. It hasn’t been a conscious decision to start pulling back — I’m not leaving for at least another two months and I want to be involved and engaged with what’s happening while I’m there. Instead, I realize that disengaging is a neccessary hitchiker to the choice and announcement of departure, no matter how far in the future it’s going to happen. My trajectory has shifted. I’m moving away from the commune, and so I’m not putting my energy into the collective vision of what we’re doing together. Now it’s what they’re doing together. I’m seperate from the whole because I’m not moving forward with the whole. I’m not thinking about what musical we’re going to perform this winter. I’m not thinking about whose Validation Day card I’m going to make. I’m not investing my thoughts and energy into wondering how to do the projects that come into my mind — instead I’m releasing them as fantasies and pipe dreams. I’m no longer creating at Twin Oaks. I’m packing. And I’m resisting that, wanting to be creating, clinging to the desire to be invested and involved instead of mourning and releasing. I’m moving on, at least for awhile. I may come back. I may return. And that’s not the direction I’m moving in right now. Right now I’m moving towards grad school. I’m moving towards academic exploration and opportunities to teach.

and as I write those sentences, I don’t feel passion. I feel dread. A friend who is currently a grad student in sociology at UNC just forwarded me a bunch of emails that have been circulating through his department, highlighting the internal politics and money manipulations and bureaucracy that I guess exists everywhere, and especially in academia. Is all of life a petty battlefield? This is a piece of Twin Oaks I want to get away from! What keeps us from being honest with each other? Fear. What keeps us stuck in fear? More fear. What else? How do we learn to be more transparent, more honest, and take more responsibility? I thought it was communal living. I thought living and working together, making decisions together, relying on each other for basic survival would necessitate openness and trust. And it does, in some ways. I have more open and trust-filled friendships and relationships than I’ve ever had in my life. And still there’s the underlying fear and blame and resentment that poisons our growth at Twin Oaks, and we just don’t seem to know how to work with that, how to dissolve its power to keep life stagnant and unchanging.

I’m going to keep exploring, and grad school is just another step on this journey…

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