Alice In Wonderland

Elena Kalis

As I sit, the feeling of exhaustion washes over me. Like a dull pressure that fills my body with a quiet tension that does not actually ache; however, I am thoroughly exhausted. I have embodied one of my favorite childhood characters – Alice in Wonderland – who cried herself into becoming a miniature girl and was swept out of the room by a current of her own tears. Today I cried myself into a sweeping sea. The stress, which had been unknowingly dormant within me, had suddenly sprung up and rushed from my eyes. For several hours, I became the giant that flooded her room with tears.

I made the decision to move to Paris is March (or February at the earliest); however, it wasn’t a new idea. Several years ago, I had switched my focus from London to Paris and it was my 2009 trip to France that my decision became firm. As I sat in a Paris café, I decided upon my father’s birthday – May 14, 2012– as the day I was to become an ExPat. Life however intervened and the date sprung ahead like a wound up toy that could not remain in its stagnant place.

Things have changed drastically over the last few years. I have been in denial about the fact that my inspiration and creative drive have all but left me. And what the city of Los Angeles’ part was in that creative void. And where my heart got the better of me. My true friends had tried to support my spurts of inspiration, while a few hacked away at my foundation, either with cruel intention or blind fear. I allowed the latter to hold me down. I acted with fear, for there was once a reason that I was willing to remain here and not venture back out into the world that I loved as a child. And it has taken a lot to pull myself out of such a wasteland to see how I kept myself in the dark.

With nothing holding me in LA – or in the USA – I made the decision to change my “due date” to May of 2011. I have spent the last few days and weeks bringing the different pieces together. I have moved out of my house, put a few important possessions into storage and worked to complete my visa application. I am now inspired and filled with excitement, while the level of stress has been surprisingly low and manageable. Until today, when the stress of moving to another continent caught up to me. And I was forced to release the emotions held within me.