Ever since I was told to move out of home at sixteen with no hopes of a career other than whoring, I’ve always wanted a place of my own, constantly. I have aunts whose places it is out of question to not stay the night and longer and yet, no matter how much they would ask me to stay longer, part of me was always convinced three days was too long, and a week was definitely overstaying my welcome; no matter that they have never made me feel this way; not once!
When a parent constantly tells you they do not want you in their house, you tend to project that wish on future hosts and assume that people don’t really mean it when they say you can stay as long as you wish. That’s why the thought of my own place- a place I could stay and not care about being welcome- was such a huge fantasy.
I thought to myself, if I have my own place, I would be happier. I will not be anyone’s burden and I will be free of these feelings I’ve had for so long.
Year after year of wanting and not getting, I had chances to stay at friend’s places and saw the very real possibility of having to move back home for lack of rent. That was a thought I particularly disliked. And more than that, having one’s own place came at a price I really was not willing to pay. It would have satisfied my need to be independent but then I’d have to forgo many privileges that came with not having to come up with rent each month. I had a few sure money-making ventures that would definitely pay for my monthly rent, but I would have to sacrifice among other things, my writing time.
Mulling it over, I asked myself if I would truly feel fulfilled having a place of my own only to constantly worry about coming up with rent each month. The answer was a resounding no.
While speaking to one of my pals who is an artist, he projected that considering the career paths we chose, it would probably take about 5 years to be independent enough to comfortably move out and have our art careers support us. His circumstances and mine are different but there was a lot of sense in what he said and I realized then, that I was being short-sighted.
Financial independence is a HUGE thing but more important is the mastery of my artistic skills.
I truthfully cannot afford my own place right now, and just because I was once made to feel unwelcome, doesn’t mean I will always be unwanted at other people’s places. I decently chip in whenever I can and looking around me, I realize how many homes are open to me, to have space to work on my projects whenever I need to.
I do not mind-read my relatives anymore. If I want to stay a couple of weeks, I will from here on. I have friends who would never turn me away (and not for lack of choice) if I were on the move and needed a place to crash.
I need not lose sight of that which is truly important, in pursuit of quick fixes which will still have cracks. Life has been shitty in many ways but it has also given me options. I refuse to be too blind or proud to take them all as they come.