I don’t even know where to begin. All I can say is everything that I thought was going to happen, pretty much changed. The one thing that remained the same since we last met, is I am indeed living in an “empty nest.”
Guess what? It surprisingly doesn’t feel empty or alone. It’s all good and feels like we are doing the right thing. Funny, as we were leaving Cartegena, Colombia, it became extra clear that it’s time to begin anew.
I’ve been reflecting on how much has changed in one years time. This time last year, I spent so many nights freaking out, living in panic because I frequently didn’t know where my son was. I was receiving automated calls from the school everyday about my son not being in class. And when I did see my son, it was in our mess, and he was asleep, not speaking, or getting high.
One of my best friends reminded me, how great it was that I trusted my intuition and pulled my son out of a school system that didn’t work for him and thousands of others (that’s another story) and started traveling the world.
If you would have told me a year ago that I’d be living in Brooklyn, New York, and actually kind of loving it, I would have told you no way. I would never live in New York, it’s the last place on Earth I’d ever want to go.
But as life has it, we are full of surprises. And if you’re wiling to trust your self and the crazy ideas that come to you, you never know what wonderful new worlds will open up to you.
After mijo went to New York alone, it took him all but two days before he signed a contract with Wilhelmina Models and was summoned to return for Fashion Week in late January.
We had a one-way ticket to Colombia at that point and I had dreams that we’d spend a month in Colombia, go to Brasil, back to Europe and maybe even Asia to round up the entire year of unschooling.
We did get to have a lovely holiday in Playa del Carmen, Mexico with mi madre and it was at the airport leaving Cancun for Bogota, Colombia that the invitation was finally presented.
Mijo said, “You should come to New York too.”
I was waiting for him to state his desires. I really didn’t know if he wanted me to be in New York with him or not. So many times he seems so grown up and so ready, but something about this statement made me realize he wasn’t done with his mama yet and also, maybe just maybe there was something in New York for me too.
It was then that I started washing away all the other projections I made and worked to embrace the notion of going to Nueva York. I was resistant. All I’ve been wanting to do is live in a small town filled with nature and write and work on my online business. But no. No nature for you mama. The biggest most dense city in the states is calling you.
My compromise was Brooklyn, and being near Prospect Park, so I could have some semblance of nature. I didn’t want to go from peace and calm to super hectic city, I felt that Brooklyn would be halfway calm and doable for me.
I had many conversations with a dear friend who lived in New York in the past and asked her advice on all the things. She hooked me up with an awesome private Facebook group that helped me land two separate rooms in two separate apartments in Brooklyn.
Not only was this the easiest, most economic solution, but it felt like the right solution. He needed to live in New York on his own terms. Adding a little more security knowing you’ve got family just down the block. If you remember, several months ago, we kind of came to the point that we really do better as a family when there are others in between us in our living spaces.
Of course, we both ended up living with an international crowd, mostly hailing from France. And of course, New York has all the international things that we’ve come to love. I guess I needed to travel to other parts of the world before I could appreciate it so much here.
Now we have our own apartments that are about 15 minutes away from each other. I think we both have a new sense of autonomy and we are still being a family.
Since we’ve arrived, I’ve never seen mijo work for anything so much in his life. He’s been at innumerable castings at 7 am to 7 pm, back and forth to the city everyday for the past two weeks. He is exhausted, but boy does he have purpose and drive.
It feels like this is the final lesson for our Unschooling lessons… can you make it here on your own…eventually?
I’m giving him three months (+/-) to figure out how to make it here on his own. Are you not ready to ‘graduate’ when you can live sustainably on your own?
I’ve committed to living here for at least three months, it’s funny though how much I’m digging it. I wasn’t even intending on building community, but it’s happening. I’m finding all the yogis, dancers, and the types of beings I really appreciate.
The beautiful thing about unschooling is that you get to make up the rules. This self-directed education has become more than tremendous for my son. He’s learning more about life than he ever would have in a public school, oh and me too. Whew!
Thank God we left.