10 Years / 31 Days
10 years ago on September 30th, I rolled into my sister Mary’s driveway in Orlando, after a long drive from New Jersey. My car was packed with everything I owned, my baby sister Melissa, flown out from California to assist me, was driving. I don’t know how I talked her into driving the whole way, but of the two of us, I think I am actually the baby. I can drive, I just hate long stretches of highway driving. But she is so brave. Thank god/s and whoever else for her. Thank god for both of my sisters.
I had lived most of my life in Florida (though I was born in Ohio and spent a few years there as a small child.) But from ages 9-28 I lived in Florida. That’s where most of my small family was, and my friends, all two of them. I packed up and left all of that behind, everything I knew, in February of 2004, to move to New Jersey. That… was a bad idea. And for 7 years I tried to make that bad idea work, but ultimately it failed spectacularly. In February of 2011, over the course of a phone call on a lonely winter afternoon, Mary convinced me to come back home. This was a good idea. It was the Best Idea.
I spent the summer packing and divesting, Melissa flew out at the end of September 2011, we stuffed my car as full as it could be, and I left that place and never looked back. When we finally pulled into Mary’s driveway…that was one of the happiest days, most glorious of my life. And every day since, even the tough ones, even the impossible ones? Have been even better. I am so grateful for both of my incredible sisters, for their fearlessness and wisdom, and for their unflagging support of their eldest sister. I mean it in every way that you could mean such a thing: my life is better because of them.
Today (well, actually yesterday but October 1st sounds more dramatic) marks ten years since I have been back!
I made a cake (Nigella Lawson’s Rosemary Remembrance cake) to celebrate with Yvan, who has been at my side for the majority of the time I have been back in Florida, and he too makes my life better in so many ways. I never thought I would have a partner that I could laugh with and share my secrets with and who will enjoy all of my weird, experimental meals and compliment all of my perfumes and support my wildest dreams…but that’s him. I’m wild about him. Turns out he was a good idea, too. (Thanks, past Sarah for being the aggressor in this matter and asking him out on a date!)
Totally unrelated, but as it is October 1st, the first day of the very best month, I’m going to attempt, in my typical lazy way, to participate in 31 Days of Horror. Now…to be clear here, I’m not going to try and fool you into thinking I’m watching and writing about a new movie every day. I mean, there are some days that I might do that! But I think I will be talking about some books and movies that I’ve watched earlier in the year, too. I’m tired, man. I’m burnt out. I just wrote a book. I may soon be starting another one (this is a thing that is super up in the air and not a sure thing, but it’s a possible thing!) So I haven’t got it in me to do 31 Days of Horror perfectly, but I’m going to do my best!
To start with, I am totally half-assing it, and pointing you to some horror-related things from the past! Hee hee! Classic Sarah! Check back throughout the month of October to see what else I think I can get away with!
–Horror Inspired Perfumes
–How To Wear Your Favorite Horror Film
–Interview with Will Erickson of Too Much Horror Fiction
Nuri McBride says
This makes me happy in every possible way. Here's to good choices, good sisters, good partners, and good cake!
S. Elizabeth says
Awwww, yay! Thank you! I was also thinking about how...while there were a few friends I connected with while I was living there, it wasn't until I left that my world really truly opened up. I'm afraid that had I never left, we might have never met! I am so, so glad to know you, Nuri. And I'm glad that things worked out in a way that allowed that to happen <3
I also an eldest of 3 sisters. They are such a life-saving treasure. Thank you for sharing your beautiful story.
S. Elizabeth says
They truly are! Sometimes I think that if I had stayed in NJ...I might not have lived to be writing this. That sounds a little melodramatic, but that was a miserable time. I am so glad you've got sisters to love, and to love you, as well!
Shana N. says
I'm so glad you made the move. I'm soooo happy we got to finally meet in person after years of being online friends. I enjoy the happy Sarah over the sad one and we both made 2011 our year of change and did being things that made our lives ridiculously better! Hope 2022 brings us another in person visit. Xoxo