Why a memoir?

In telling people I was working on writing a memoir most look at me with a questionable eye and a face full of doubt. Whether it is my non-biological Mother, some dude I may or may not have a crush on, or any respectable adult over the age of 30, they all seem a little worried about this pursuit. This makes sense. I’m completely terrified as well. How can someone write a memoir at the age of 25? My response is, the same thing I use to tell my college boyfriend in attempts to sound like an old soul, “I’ve lived a lot of life in my young age and most of it I did not ask for.” As I crawl inside myself looking for material and content, I am reaffirmed on a regular basis that this is what I’m being called to do.

My life to date is a story of heroes. Men and women who have seen triumph and who can whole heartily be given credit for my successes. I want people to know that there is life after tragedy. In the eyes of the public or in the solitude of depression, it is possible to move beyond the events that leave scars on your history. There is strength found in reclaiming something as precious as one’s life and a well-deserved pride in doing it with integrity. I want people to understand the portrait of an amazing woman who was never asked to be my mother but took me in kindness and showed me love even though I didn’t start calling her Mom until I was 22.

I want to weave my readers through the struggle of being a recent graduate in an economic culture most 23 year olds, let alone 50 year olds were not prepared for in 2009. I want to give a glimpse of the ever so coveted Los Angeles art world and then I hope to land right smack in the middle of three guys changing the Los Angeles food culture one restaurant at a time.  These are the stories found in my book. 

Maybe it will take me a lifetime but I feel I have to use the time given to me now to get out as much as I can. This memoir is more than just the life of a questionably sane 20 something; it’s a telescope into a range of industries, politics and social atrocities. 

Brief moments of culture shock

  • Driving to the gym an old tune I haven’t heard in a while came on the radio: Backstreet Boys, I don’t want you back. Seriously? Then it dawned on me they are still playing the same stuff they played when I was in High School. 
  • Watching the snow fall is an activity (and I love it..). I had to stay in today because it was snowing and my car won’t make it up the driveway in that sort of weather. 
  • Hot style trends are crocks, fleece and  the “natural look” for the older crowd. The younger ones seem to like pocketless, white washed jeans with studded belts and skin tight shirts that emphasize their muffin tops. It’s never a good look!
  • High school students have face piercings and black eyeliner, what?! Where are their parents…
  • Oh, but at least the hippies are taking care of their children…though it is a little unsettling when you see whole families with dreadlocks. I guess that’s one way to get out of washing your child’s hair regularly.

 *shrug*

Dorothy, you are not in Los Angeles anymore. 

Sometimes you have to go back to the beginning in order to move forward.

Choosing to move home wasn’t as hard of a decision as I had thought it would be. At 25 I had lived in Los Angeles for a little over five years. The last year in that city had been one of the hardest. Unlike, the years of struggle before it, I was financially stable. Instead of working three jobs to make rent I had a career and still remained a strong and active member of the art world. While I loved Los Angeles and the many opportunities it brings, I couldn’t help but feel like I was in a waiting room.

I would never settle down anywhere in southern California. The chances of finding love, in a city that is driven by self-empowering individuals, seemed fleeting. It’s not that people don’t find love in Los Angeles. They do. However, it’s the exception not the rule. Most families move to the valley and suburban areas to raise their children. That definitely would never be in the cards for this small town girl. The many marriages I came to admire while living in LA mostly didn’t happen until the couple was much older then where I want to be when I start my family.

I’m not saying that there is a wrong or right way to develop your life. It really is a matter of preference. My preference had left me unhappy. I was living a lifestyle I wasn’t proud of and in a city I wasn’t committed to. The relationship you have with where you live is like any relationship. It must be nurtured, your lifestyles need to be similar and well, frankly, you and your city need to like each other. Once you fall out of love it’s hard to fall back into any sort of sustainable living arrangement. There may be a summer here or a weekend there that’s full of joy but if it’s not sustainable, you end up prolonging the inevitable. When the opportunity arose I knew it was my time to leave. Within two weeks, I broke up with Los Angeles and told everyone I was moving.

My 25th birthday party became an impromptu going away bash. I found a replacement roommate, sold my furniture and loaded up my car. I spent my last few days roaming Abbot Kinney, going out to lunch, starring at the ocean, going to concerts in Silver Lake and saying my farewells. It was beautiful. I left feeling loved, accomplished and inspired.

My decision to move home was very similar to when I realized I wanted to be an Art History major. It didn’t make sense to many people but I knew in my heart of hearts it was the right path for me. I needed a way to keep tract of the choices I’ll be making, the different things I will add and subtract from my life. I needed a way to memorialize how I curate the next few months of travel, love and even that of business. So here I am; blogging…. Along with everyone else. Apparently this is cool thing to do! This is me trying to spruce up my writing skills, keep everyone informed with my impending travel plans and have a space where I can share my experiences.

Nothing more and nothing less.