“Better Terms.” The name itself signifies its connection to “Coming to Terms…” That place where I was literally reborn. Pulled out of the womb of my own head. Through a tiny keyhole, brought forth into a larger world. Waiting for me in that world was a family that welcomed me, nurtured me, encouraged me, admonished me. I was never an outgoing, exuberant child; didn’t throw my arms around every family member, close or distant, I came into contact with. I had my favorites, and I stuck with them. Maybe a little too closely for anyone’s ultimate comfort…

But we have been graduated from that place. Not an event we foresaw or desired, but it happened nevertheless. Our “parents” redecorated our rooms, perhaps a trifle prematurely? To encourage us to get out there and try our wings? So, we flew. Though some of us had to get kicked several times before we finally fell out of the nest…

Graduations…rites of passage. We sally forth with the best intentions of keeping in touch with our “bosom-buddies;” our soul-mates. The special circle of friends whose love and support seem as essential to our lives as breathing. But after a season or two of new directions, new people, different dreams…those bonds dry up and crumble away. It happens in the “real world.” Why should the virtual world be any different? What does it take to create a truly life-long bond? Hard enough to find in the realm of flesh and blood. Maybe impossible in the ether. For me, anyway. Come so late to this world, perhaps I crave something that it cannot give. But I can’t seem to stop looking…

So, “Better Terms” is the next step. How will it differ from “Coming to Terms…?” I don’t know. I’m fresh off the bus, here. Haven’t even decided which way to walk yet. The only decision I have made is that this will not be “Coming to Terms…” I will not carry the baggage of every moment of my previous virtual life with me on the next leg of the journey. I will keep the words, of course. Most of my posts started life as “Word” documents, copied and pasted into my journal, so I don’t face the horrendous job of downloading and saving them. I already have them. “Coming to Terms” is the story of a finite time and place, and at the appropriate time, will be “put to bed” with my other journals—like the story of my sister’s final illness and death, and the journal I kept when Dad left us, and the explosion of our family that followed. Life’s lessons on paper. Saved…for what? I don’t know. Just to let someone know I was here, when I am no longer?

Ultimately, I don’t know if this new chapter will be short, long, the beginning, middle, or end. I have no idea where it is going, or where I am going. I hope for a next next chapter…a place where my writing will really come into its own. Ideally, that would make “Better Terms” a very short transition point. Then again, writing in this larger, harsher, more anonymous world may just discourage me to the point of stuffing me back inside my own head, never to be publicly heard from again. That, too, would make “Better Terms” a short chapter…a swan song. Wherever it takes me, it doesn’t feel like somewhere I’m going to be for a long time.

Then again, I just got here. I may find something totally unexpected, something that keeps me here, thriving and growing, for a long time. (Historically, that has not been how my life has unfolded; but, what the hell, there’s always a first time…) I thought I had found that something special at “Coming to Terms….” But it ended. And not because I was done with it. Que sera sera. The world will have its way. What’s the use, in the end, of making plans at all?

Advertisement