Life, Episode VI

Have you ever had one of those moments in life where you can’t imagine things ever being different? It’s more than a rut, it’s a never-ending cosmic whirlwind from which you can’t escape. When you look ahead to the years and decades to come, this is all you can see; the same stuff you’re dealing with now forever, over and over again, on repeat. It’s like your life has somehow become a horror movie version of Groundhog’s Day, without the love story or even the cute rodent.

Last January I got to this point, and it was bad. So bad. When I looked ahead, all I could see was my landlord raising my already-ridiculously-too-high-Los Angeles-rent yet again, having to pack and move yet again, having to find a new roommate yet again, becoming great friends with said roommate only to have them get engaged then married and having to find another one yet again, working 70 hours a week yet again, still not having enough for a savings account yet again, burning out yet again . . . FOREVER.

I could picture myself, a tubby 80 year old woman, having to go through exactly this, yet again. And, of course, I freaked out. Because these are circumstances I can survive and possibly even thrive in while they’re happening, but the thought of this being my entire future knocked the breath out of me. It was time for a change. A big one.

So, last year, I quit my job, gave away ⅔ of my belongings to thrift and independent book stores, moved the rest of my stuff into one bedroom at my mum’s place in the desert town from which I had escaped a decade ago, and ran away to a Christian commune in the English countryside for 3 months. I returned to the States just before Christmas to settle into Life, Episode VI.

Life, broken into seasons, is much more manageable and makes a lot more sense than the previously described endless linear view that never changes. So far, there have been 5 chapters to my life, episodes if you like; episodes more like British television or Star Wars films, quite long and with painful yet eager times of waiting in between.

Episode I, Childhood: idyllic, optimistic, happy, full of lots of moves, all about family and imagination.

Episode II, Jr. High and High School: when I discovered insomnia, literature, and that people suck.

Episode III, College-Post College: figuring out who I am, developing friendships, and a deepened understanding of God.

Episode IV, Dad’s Death: when life changed for all of us.

Episode V, Los Angeles: the first time I felt I truly fit into a church family, a city I loved, found independence & career, and all the stress that goes with it.

And now begins Episode VI, Back to the Desert. Or perhaps Episode VI, Finding Family. Or, to steal even more from my beloved Star Wars saga, Episode VI, A New Hope.

For most of Episode V of my life, I was a high school English teacher, and now I’m an elementary school library clerk. You know, I’m that obnoxious person constantly encouraging my students to find and use their voices. I’ve also been a Biblical counselor for over a decade, helping people process what’s going on in their lives from a biblical perspective. So, here I am, challenging myself to do just that, use my voice and process stuff by blogging once a week about the issues surrounding singles in the church and work and world. Are there any specific topics touching these areas you’d like me to explore in the next few weeks? Let me know in the comments.

Welcome to Episode VI in the life of the Awkward Spinster.

29 thoughts on “Life, Episode VI”

  1. Elegant and eloquent –of course. I am so thrilled that you’re doing this, and I look forward to being a regular reader and a companion in your adventure.

    1. Thank you for your encouragement, Sheryl! Glad to have you along on the journey.

  2. This is so honest, and sooo relatable, and I love the references. I can’t wait for the next post.

    1. Ha! Glad people are getting the references! 🙂 Happy to have someone who relates.

  3. Hey Fawn, I love the new blog!!
    As well as the Star Wars referenced break-down of your episodic life.
    I feel you on the way you can really kind of see “seasons” or “episodes” in life… I have a similar feeling for my own.
    I would be interested in what your new interests are and where you want your life to go… as well as any insights your biblical counseling perspective would lead you… what would you tell you if you were counseling yourself from that perspective.
    (That was an awkward sentence).
    Forgive any bad grammar… I am not a very accomplished writer.

    Anyway, very exciting to see this new blog… I hope it encourages you and many others.
    It is a perspective that will prove to be helpful for all people, I’m sure.
    Lots of love,

    1. Thanks for the encouragement and the ideas for future blogs, they’re much appreciated!

  4. Love it! Love that you’re writing, processing, and ministering!

    Will you share with us how to graciously respond to hurtful (though possibly well intentioned) comments/encouragements about singleness?
    How do you respond in the moment? How do you think of it after? How do you process your hurt? Does it ever get to the point of just rolling off your back? How do you seek support over the issue without gossiping or slandering? How do you seek to be strengthened by it instead of destroyed.

    Love you!

    1. Jenni, thanks for the great idea for a future blog post! I’ll try to address that soon. 🙂

  5. Love it. Miss you. I cannot wait to keep up with you here and feel your radiant joy and honesty from far away. So lucky to have gotten to live with you for a short wonderful season.

  6. Great blog post, Fawn! As someone who was perpetually single for a long time, I can absolutely relate to your subject matter. I applaud you taking a deep breath and reassessing your life. Good luck in all your new endeavors. I look forward to reading more!

  7. I’m in for all of this 🙂 Recent issue I’ve been having: how to buy produce for one. It goes bad so darn quick.

    1. Oh my gosh, that is such an issue! Making food for one in general. Sigh. I’ll ponder this and see what I can come up with. 😁

  8. Your honesty and candor is refreshing and appreciated. Although I’m in a different season now (or episode as the case may be) I can resonate with much of what you said regarding singleness. I believe this blog can be an encouragement to all.

    Far too many of us try to craft an image on social media that is true for none, one of a life of constant excitement and no problems. Thanks for keeping it real!

  9. This is great. I have a question….what made the church in L.A. different and more homey? So many topics to throw on the barbie…… dating after 30, finding your place in a culture that recognizes families, balance of life, loneliness, the ticking biological clock, feeling stuck in a status, thoughts on the future (who the heck will take care of me?). I might ponder more, but it’s all my sleepy brain could come up with now. Thanks for being a spokesperson for the few us out there. <3

    1. Great questions and ideas, Mandy! Not sure I have The Answer to them, but I’ll do my best to address them! 🙂

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