So while the government has shut down, figured I'd celebrate some nice anniversaries. Yesterday technically (Sept. 30) I arrived back in NYC two years ago. My stuff arrived a couple months later, but I started teaching at Bronx Community College the next day. It was quite a whirlwind. I wrote about it here of course, and someday when I have the time, I'll go back and read what I wrote.
I'm sorry to have not written a post in a while, but it's been kinda busy with teaching and some other exciting projects hopefully coming to fruition and visiting my mother in Maine for her birthday. John was able to visit two times this past month, so that was great, too. More than great actually...I miss him so terribly right now. I cannot believe - still - that it takes 7-8 months for him to get a visa Even Though We're Married and he's from Canada (Canada, people! Canada?!). Now with the government shut down, God only knows...
However, in other news, one of the reasons John came down again this month was to go to the doctor with me regarding fertility issues, and as can be expected at 50, things are not looking good in that area. I was sad about that, however it was good to get the information. We can't afford the crazy expensive alternatives, so decided it was time to let the idea of having a child go.
Then, in the way things tend to work in my life, as soon as I've accepted something, another avenue appears. When flying back from Maine to NYC, my seat mate told me that he and his partner had just adopted a gorgeous little baby girl. I asked him how that had worked and apparently it was through the foster system. I had no idea adoptions ever occurred that way, but assumed there was some type of fee. No, there isn't. He was very encouraging. He and his partner are gay and assumed there would be prejudice, which there wasn't. I asked him if they'd think I was too old and he said no. He said that their case workers asked them to send friends their way and he gave me his contact details, which was quite generous. So, a possibility appears. Amazing, right? Will keep you all posted...
Meanwhile, I have not been able to work on the grandmothers book in way too long. I look forward to the day I can return to it. Life has just been full to bursting with other things.
It's late so I'm going to keep this short, but I want to say: hooray for being married for 3 months! While I will be far happier when we can finally live together, I still count July 1, 2013 as the happiest & best day of my life so far. I think the only day that will beat that will be the day John and I can actually live together permanently. I know - I ask for so much....
As for my 2 years in NYC, wow. I am so glad I moved back here, even though the government is insane and America is...what it is...NYC is my home and always will be. The one place in the UK I miss so much it makes my teeth hurt is the Orkney Islands (the islands north of Scotland). I am hoping to get back there to visit as soon as possible. I delayed that this year because of love & borders and would make that choice again, but my dearest hope is that I can return soon with John.
But, overall, life is good. I have found true love with another human being and am finding that allows me to reach out for the work I love, too. I've never felt so strong in my life, because no matter what I try, I know that love is there, so nothing is life or death. It's a glorious feeling and one I've never experienced until now. Wish I had managed to find it earlier in my life, but so entirely grateful it's come my way at all.
I wish this for everyone, because it feels like the meaning of life, if such a term even encompasses what I want to say - maybe more like touching the infinite in the manifest world. The miracle of unconditional love.
Welcome to my blog..
"We struggle with dream figures and our blows fall on living faces." Maurice Merleau-Ponty
When I started this blog in 2011, I was in a time of transition in my life between many identities - that of Artistic Director of a company (Apocryphal Theatre) to independent writer/director/artist/teacher and also between family identity, as I discover a new family that my grandfather's name change at the request of his boss in WWII hid from view - a huge Hungarian-Slovak contingent I met in 2011. Please note in light of this the irony of the name of my recently-disbanded theatre company. This particular transition probably began in the one month period (Dec. 9, 2009-Jan. 7, 2010) in which I received a PhD, my 20 year old cat died on my father's birthday and then my father, who I barely knew, died too. I was with him when he died and nothing has been the same since. This blog is tracing the more conscious elements of this journey and attempt to fill in the blanks. I'm also writing a book about my grandmothers that features too. I'd be delighted if you joined me. (Please note if you are joining mid-route, that I assume knowledge of earlier posts in later posts, so it may be better to start at the beginning for the all singing, all dancing fun-fair ride.) In October 2011, I moved back NYC after living in London for 8 years and separated from my now ex-husband, which means unless you want your life upended entirely don't start a blog called Somewhere in Transition. In November 2011, I adopted a rescue cat named Ugo. He is lovely. As of January 2012, I began teaching an acting class at Hunter College, which is where one of my grandmothers received a scholarship to study acting, but her parents would not let her go. All things come round…I began to think it may be time to stop thinking of my life in transition when in June 2012 my stepfather Tom suddenly died. Now back in the U.S. for a bit, I notice, too, my writing is more overtly political, no longer concerned about being an expat opining about a country not my own. I moved to my own apartment in August 2012 and am a very happy resident of Inwood on the top tip of Manhattan where the skunks and the egrets roam in the last old growth forest on the island.
I am now transitioning into being married again with a new surname (Barclay-Morton). John is transitioning from Canada to NYC and as of June 2014 has a green card. So transition continues, but now from sad to happy, from loss to love...from a sense of alienation to a sense of being at home in the world.
As of September 2013 I started teaching writing (composition and rhetoric) as an adjunct professor at Fordham University, which I have discovered I love with an almost irrational passion. While felt blessed for the opportunity, after four years of this, the lack of pay combined with heavy work load stopped working, so have transferred this teaching passion to private workshops in my own apartment and working with writers one on one, which I adore. I will die a happy person if I never have to grade an assignment ever again.
I worked full time on the book thanks to a successful crowd-funding campaign in May 2014 and completed it at two residencies at Vermont Studio Center and Wisdom House in summer 2015. I have done some revisions and am shopping it around to agents and publishers now, along with a new book recently completed.
I am now working full-time as a freelance writer, writing workshop leader, coach, and editor. Contact me if you are interested in any of these services.
Not sure when transition ends, if it ever does. As the saying goes, the only difference between a sad ending and a happy ending is where you stop rolling the film.
For professional information, publications, etc., go to my linked in profile and website for Barclay Morton Editorial & Design. My Twitter account is @wilhelminapitfa. You can find me on Facebook under my full name Julia Lee Barclay-Morton. More about my grandmothers' book: The Amazing True Imaginary Autobiography of Dick & Jani
Recently, I started a website Our Grandmothers, Our Selves, which has stories about many people's grandmothers. Please check it out. I will be blogging there, too, now. You can also contact me through that site.