Magenta. That’s how I was feeling today, magenta. Truth be told, it’s how I’ve been feeling for the past two weeks.
I love the Golden Girls. It’s in my top five favorite tv shows and where I learned the expression ‘feeling magenta’. Blanche, one of the show’s characters describes the magenta feeling –
‘Magenta. That’s what I call it when I get that way. All kinds of feelings tumbling all over themselves. Well, you know, you’re not quite blue because you’re not really sad and although you’re a little jealous, you wouldn’t say you’re green with envy and every now and then you realize you’re kinda scared but you’d hardly call yourself yellow. I hate that feeling. I just hate it. And I hate the color magenta. That’s why I named it that. Magenta. No way to really explain it but, fortunately, between friends, you don’t have to’.
I’ve been feeling very guilty about feeling magenta, especially with all the great things that have been happening to me. Great things aside, I couldn’t shake the magenta feeling. It sucks to feel numb, excited, optimistic, melancholic, scared, reluctant, grateful, and a slew of other words I can throw in here but won’t for the sake of brevity. It sucks even more when you can’t identify the reason behind the feeling. For two weeks I was perplexed because up until sitting down and putting pen on paper, I didn’t know where it came from.
I dealt with the magenta suckiness by hoping it would pass. But it just lingered there like a bad smell in a room that’s hard to trace. And only after I decided to sit and journal about it today I was able to explore the feelings and trace the roots. The magenta I’ve been feeling is linked to my transition into a new season. One where I let go of the past and some of the things and dreams I held dear to me. One where I closed off chapters of a life I once knew. New seasons, no matter how much excitement and promise they hold can be scary and overwhelming.
For a while, I’ve been trying to sell my house. It’s been on the market for some time and today, seven months after being viewed by the new owner, the sale finally closed. I’m thrilled but until I started writing and exploring the magenta feeling, I didn’t realize that I was also a bit sad and reluctant to let go, even though this was something I wanted. Less than ten years ago I built that house brick by brick. It was my home, not some crappy apartment that helped pay someone’s mortgage. It was my own space. I saw it from concept to the final brick and I saw the last workman grab his tools and walk away before I moved my stuff in. It was the place I would share with my now ex-husband when we got married and it was also the place I would explore my creativity, start my business, and drive my first brand new car to from the dealer. It was also the place of hope and the home I hoped to bring our child to someday.
And life happened as it always does. The marriage became abusive and the police, not friends came to the house. The business transitioned, no babies came and midway through the ten-year mark, I realized that it was not meant to be my dream home, maybe because I was not living my dream life there and the bad experiences sullied it all. I wanted something new. Just for me. Minus him and all the unhappiness, not tainted by tears, knife marks through the doors in his fits of rage, or all the other unpleasantness that happened there. Yes, there were good times, many. But the overall experience just felt tainted to me. It was time to get it sold and begin anew. I put it on the market and moved to a place I felt held a better promise for me.
I haven’t lived in the house I built in years. Yet, two weeks ago I had to face up to the past. I went there to help my mom move and get stuff I’d walked away from years earlier. It was all very bittersweet. Each room bore memories and pieces of a scattered life and broken dreams. It was a bit too nauseating. It was not a place I wanted to be. It was my house but for many years it was not my home. I was glad to legally put space between it and me. And while I’m excited that it is sold and a chapter closed, I’m now understanding that just because I’m glad that season is over and I’m looking forward to my new home doesn’t mean I’ll be spared from the rollercoaster of magenta-associated emotions that comes from closing chapters.
And that is where writing comes in, scoops me up and saves me from myself and the feelings and thoughts I sometimes have. I grabbed my journal, pen, a cup of bush tea and a plate of crackers and leaned into the discomfort of the stories I was suppressing. The story recounted the highs of moving in after the honeymoon and the lows of the first beating. The highs of welcoming my new employee through the gate as we worked eight hours a day trying to build a business from a room in my home and the lows of watching her get another job when the business stagnated. And as I wrote, more stories, some bitter, some sweet all worth recounting, surfaced to my memory and forced their way through the tip of my pink jelly-roll pen. I give them a voice and let them tell themselves while allowing the pen to glide across paper. I dug deep into the feelings that had me feeling a peculiar shade of purple-red and the more I wrote the more the magenta feeling lifted.
So I paid homage to that period of my life with pen strokes and words because clearing out stuff and handing over the keys is not the best way to close ten years of a life, at least to me. Some introspection, reflection and soul searching was required. And as I wrote, I distilled lessons, registered memories and finally, I walked through the door one last time. I locked it behind me with my pen, ending that chapter of my life not with a period but a semicolon because it represents a continuation; a move into something new, positive and hopefully sweeter.
I wrote my way out of the magenta feeling and into the feeling of excitement, happiness, and expectation for what lies ahead. Because the future is bright. It is a sunny yellow with a scattering of vivid greens, electric pinks, blingy golds, flashy neon oranges, and energetic reds. There are no blues, no grays, and definitely no magentas.
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