Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Extremist Comes Home

I don't usually delve into my inner world on this blog. Sure, I offer my opinions freely, but I don't get ... emotional. I try to avoid anything too personal, anything likely to end up in my journal.

That said, I'm at home in Georgia. I find myself holding back from calling Austin "home" when talking to my parents, primarily because we all hold to a sentimental idea that this house will always be my home. I'm not ready to let it go, although I'm getting there.

When I come back here, I have culture shock. So many things seem strange - the limited recycling, the constant presence of ESPN, the lack of vegetables, driving at least 15 minutes to get anywhere. I realize how much I have changed my lifestyle and how different it is from my parents' and my brothers'.

My mom, bless her, tries. She has a little compost pile and saved colorful plastic bags for me so I could use them in my crochet projects. One brother asked me to make him a set of coasters out of plastic bags, and the other brother gave me an Obama notecard for Christmas. I've had some calm, intelligent arguments with my dad about politics and other issues (instead of emotional blow-outs that used to happen).

I should be okay with their efforts. I guess I'm grateful that they are trying to make little amends for me, but I know this - living comfortably and conveniently in the suburbs - is not the life I want. I wish it didn't bother me that these people I love have chosen lives I can't justify anymore.

Now if I can only ignore my dad watching Fox News.

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