Ever just want to trash common sense and do something insane?


I live in western North Carolina, which is a beautiful part of the country.   People actually envy me for where I live.   They’re right, too.  The scenery here is gorgeous.   The mountains are impressive.   The main hub (Asheville) is very cool too, very progressive for a small city in the South, with a surprising amount of arts and culture.     Go downtown and there are buskers on every street corner and a thriving artists’s community and people walking around dressed in tie dies and dreads.   There’s even a bumper sticker that’s popular: “Keep Asheville Weird.” I can understand why people find this area so vibrant and want to move here.

But I want out.    I’ve been living here for 23 years.  I loved it at first (or thought I did), but I’m over it.   I’ve been over it for awhile now.    I try to look at the positives; I try to look at it the way people who don’t live here and want to look at it.    Once in a while I can shift my mindset to more of an outsider one and actually appreciate it.    But it never lasts.

This is not a state that is friendly to anyone who isn’t rich, white, straight, and Republican (even though the town I live in is the opposite).   I can’t get health insurance (North Carolina did not accept the Medicaid expansion for people who are too poor to qualify for Obamacare because our governor has declared war on the poor–and he’s likely to get re-elected this November) and while we do have a “health department,” it sucks.  I won’t get into why here (I could write a whole post about THAT), but trust me, it does.    Someone in my age bracket should never be without decent health care.      The job market in this area is also terrible, even for college graduates.    Everything is unaffordable.  Rents and mortgages rival those of New York City.   That’s because everyone from New York City is moving here.    It’s lost its sleepy southern charm.

I can’t deal with falls and winters anymore.   I’m over “seasons.”  I’ve lived with seasons my entire life and don’t need to see any more snow or fall foliage.    Watching spring unfold is no longer worth enduring the five or six miserable months that precede it.   True, winters aren’t as intense here as farther north but it’s still too cold for me.    I want to move to Florida.   I guess that means I’m officially “old.”

A lot of people hate Florida and I suppose I can understand why.  Heat, bugs, crime, hurricanes, tornadoes, and never-ending summer.    But the advantages for me are that I’d never be far from the beach.  Having grown up in New Jersey and New York, I crave the coast.  It’s in my blood.   I was never more than an hour’s drive from any beach.  During the summers, I spent almost every weekend at the Jersey Shore, or any number of beaches on Long Island.   The mountains, as beautiful as they are, don’t speak to my soul the way the ocean does.   I feel closed in.   The sky here isn’t big enough because so much of it is obscured by trees and hills.     To get to the beach, you have to drive at least five hours (Myrtle Beach or Charleston, SC is the closest to me), which requires a lot of advance planning and money.    You can’t just get up and say, “Oh, I think I’ll hang out on the beach today” and still be home for dinner.

I could live near my son, and he could help me find decent work (the job market in his area is very good, or at least it beats the one here).  The rents are also dirt cheap.  My son isn’t exactly rich; in fact he barely makes more than I do.   But he’s able to afford an apartment in a beautifully landscaped gated complex with a pool, hot tub, gym, a tennis court(!), and only five minutes from the beach.   Here, to have digs like that you have to be pretty well off.  Although Florida also hasn’t expanded Medicaid to those who don’t qualify for Obamacare, I’m a lot more likely to get a job that pays well enough that I’d qualify for health insurance.

There’s only one problem though: money.   I live paycheck to paycheck.  My rent is almost half of what I earn, which leaves very little left for anything else.   It’s difficult if not impossible to save anything.  Moving costs money, especially moving to another state.

I know you take yourself anywhere you go.    Some people have told me that moving wouldn’t solve all my problems.  I’m aware of that.   I know all about “doing a geographic” and that a new locale won’t suddenly make my life perfect or stress-free.    I won’t suddenly be cured of my PTSD or BPD or AVPD or whatever it is I actually have (though it will probably vastly improve my SAD symptoms).    I won’t be any closer to God either, since He’s everywhere.

But I really feel like I’m being called there.  I’m more than ready for a change of scenery, to be near the water again.   But to do that, I would need to take a huge risk, and I’m a risk-averse person.    Since I can’t save anything, I’d have to live in my car for a month or two.   My son doesn’t have room to put me up in his place, and I wouldn’t expect him to.    I’m pretty sure I could find a decent job in a matter of a couple of weeks, if not sooner, and my son’s in a position that he could even find me a position in his company (he’s actually offered to do this).  I could also find out if the company I work for could transfer me to the Tampa area.

I’d have to sell or give away almost everything I own, which isn’t that much.   That’s okay.  I don’t need all that stuff.  I might even be able to make enough to afford the rent and deposit somewhere for a month or so until I’m employed.   Maybe.  But even if I don’t, I could keep what I need in the car and park somewhere safe and convenient.   Although I don’t expect him to do this, my son might let me keep some of my things in his large closet.

I know this sounds batshit insane, especially for someone in their 50s.   But it’s either that or stay in a place that’s too expensive and getting more so, a place that eats all my income and doesn’t make me happy. I have too many bad memories associated with this place, there’s been way too much dysfunction.  I can’t separate those associations from my time here now.    I moved here for dishonest reasons and by even less honest means back in ’93 (that would be a whole other post), and I feel like that’s put a sort of curse on my long stay here.   Call it karma if you want, but I don’t feel like I was ever meant to live here.

There’s a saying that goes, “life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”    Living in my car for a few weeks or a month or two would definitely be living outside my comfort zone.   But it’s my only option, outside of winning Lotto (which I don’t play), to live where I want, in a place not associated with bad memories.   Some risks are smart; others are just stupid.    I’m not sure if taking this risk would be smart or stupid, but if I stay here and never take a risk, how will I ever know?

I’m not saying I’m going to do this. Like I said, I’m not a risk taker.  At all.   But it’s something I’ve been thinking about.  And being too risk-averse has caused me to miss out on so much of life.   I’m sick of always having to be practical and reasonable and live in fear of “what might happen.”  My mother always liked to rail on about all my “bad choices,” and it’s true I’ve made a lot of bad choices–but the truth is, I never had many choices.  I always had to choose the lesser of two or three evils because the opportunity to make better choices was never available to me.    Or the choice was made dishonestly.  The one big risk I ever took was moving here, but like I said, it was a risk based on deception and co-dependency.  I still struggle with regrets over that.   Maybe you just have to wrestle life’s limitations to the ground and force that choice by taking a huge risk that most people think is nuts, but still keep your integrity in doing so.    I don’t think I’d have to end up like Dustin Hoffman’s character at the end of “Midnight Cowboy.”

Ever just want to do something crazy, that everyone tells you is crazy?  Have you ever gone ahead and done it anyway?  Was it the best thing you ever did for yourself, or do you regret being so impulsive?


26 thoughts on “Ever just want to trash common sense and do something insane?

  1. Everyone warned me to not date hubby, many moons ago. Best decision I ever made. Also, moving out here was decided within a 24 hour span. I was lured by the cheap rent. I am also not a risk taker, but sometimes you just gotta do it, no matter what your age is, or how preposterous the idea may be. I think it’s better to take a risk than to sit on the idea for the next 5 years wondering if you should or not. Have you been thinking about it for a long time?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sometimes a change of scenery can change everything. One of the best moves I made was to escape the town I grew up in, re-educate myself and get away from my stifling family to start over. I’m much happier now and I hope you find that same happiness or more.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I don’t think moving to Florida is “insane” at all. You were really happy when you visited. You talk about changing your life at the age of 50. Think about being stuck in North Carolina at the age of 70. Now is the time to act. It won’t get easier. Living in your car sounds kind of drastic. Isn’t their a “Y” or something? Even a youth hostel? So life begins at the end of your comfort zone? WOW! I must be living large. I’ve had one crisis after another lately. It can wake you up. I really think you should go ahead and move. Why stay? You say it’s getting more and more expensive where you are living. Life can only get harder. How’s your credit? Maybe you can get a loan to tide you over until you get a steady job. Those low rents sound very promising. Good luck.

    Liked by 2 people

    • My credit is not good, thanks to my ex who ruined it. So a loan or whatever is out of the question. But there’s still ways around that, like just doing it, like you said.
      I hear the reason the rents are low is because everyone is moving away from there, lol! (They’re all moving here).


  4. I wrote you what ended up being a long comment but I deleted as I think you already know to go to Florida but are wondering if it’s unwise to do so without all your ducks in the row. Is that right?

    As you may know, no one makes a thing happen by already having their ducks in a row – the ducks get in the row during the process of making a thing happen. Once you start in a direction, things take on a momentum and the next steps become more obvious.

    I say just go ahead and tell yourself your moving to Florida and start happily making intentional moves toward it, no matter how small. I’m excited for you!

    I have done things spontaneously but have never regretted it, in fact, they were always my best decisions. That’s because they were what I really wanted all along and I just made the move when the opportunity arose or the time was right. So they only looked spontaneous.

    I’m looking forward to making such a move myself but the timing doesn’t seem right, but you’re making me think more about it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Good advice. I think I’ve already made y decision, but not ready to do it yet–I guess I’ll just see how things play out from here. I’ll trust God and pray about it. That’s another thing I didn’t have before when I was agnostic.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Plan B: look for a someone looking for a roommate. I talked to my son and he says the crime there is pretty bad, it’s not a good place to live in your car. So that’s what I’ll look into. Also getting a job. There are also cheap furnished rooms that cost less than staying in a hotel and are safer than living in your car. But how do you tell the scams from the real deal?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I moved from near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Albuquerque, New Mexico on the spur of the moment when I was fifty. It was one of the best decisions I ever made.

    My advice: Follow your dreams. Unless your dreams are creepy, lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Lucky,

    I so enjoyed this post because I’ve moved many times myself in search of ways to better my life, and moving really can better your life, but, you need more facts and a plan, and contingency plans too. Florida has the ocean which you love, even more importantly your son, whom you have a good relationship with. I’ve found having good people nearby in your life is even more important than the environment when you are living on limited means because you can help one another, and you won’t be isolated. Isolation and poverty together suck! To help you get some more facts, I know of a website that I like called areavibes. You can get cost of living for different towns in different states, and even what the rents are, grocery food items, and more. It will tell you how much more or less you will need to live in your new location compared to your standard of living where you are now. I think areavibes is quite user-friendly, it isn’t hard to work with, it’s easy to navigate. I would strongly advise against you sleeping in your car, although I can appreciate you wanting to be independent, a van might be different. Like nowve666 said, look into Y’s, would a shelter be preferable to your car? I don’t know how shelters work, but, I do know some of us have gone that route. I can appreciate you wanting to leave soon because prices in your area are getting out of hand and you are becoming older. There are even websites that can tell you the least expensive state in the US to live in. Like last time I checked it was Mississippi. But more importantly for you, I think, is having your son nearby. And the ocean is there!


  8. Hm. As a Floridian I don’t think living here sucks neither am I particularly “old.” 😉

    Heat, sure – that’s why we have AC. Bugs, sure – that’s why we have bug spray. Crime, no better/worse than most places – don’t talk to me about crime though especially if you are from Chicago, New York, DC or LA. Hurricanes, sure – haven’t been through one in over 10 years though plus you know they are coming well in advance. Tornados, sure – we aren’t Kansas though!

    So all in all, not a bad place to live in my humble opinion. The pros far outweigh the cons and you can always live in N. FL where the temps are considerably more mild compared to Central or South FL.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. ive been there! I visited the mountains of Ashville NC for a day and I was taken aback in awe! I will NEVER forget!!! The energy there was so clam and clean too.,the locals seemed different to me..in the grocery stores…. it was far different from where I lived at the time.. which was also nice. I was living in Pineville NC! at the Matthews NC border… and my ex and I went to the mountains.. I wanted to stay at least a week! it cant be underestimated.. if anyone is considering a visit there..even a day trip it is WELL worth it.
    I do envy anyone living there! it is incredible.
    I could have chose the beach that day or Ashville and I went with Ashville as I had never even been to a “mountain town” before.. its like Thomas Kinkade all the way…and so much more..
    I cant imagine Christmastime there.,it would blow me away… I went in the Fall…a gorgeous time…
    cant wait to go again, if I ever get the chance..
    lol I sorta notice odd things and I noticed a disproportionate amount of white guys with very curly hair! I thought well they look so healthy and mountain people ish LOL I had no idea what that even was..(mountain healthy!?) but I had that thought .
    I do not see many men in my life around locally anywhere ive lived with curly hair.. so… I never forgot that either…
    as with anything else stellar on my travels.. this memory is also tainted as I was with my narc ex
    so any spectacular day weve ever had planned.. was poisoned by … narc episodes…severe bi polar… ups and major downs.. fights,crying.. distress,depression and anxiety
    which is why my mind schismed itself.. in the face of such breathtaking beauty ..such as Ashville.. I compartmentalized it.. as some dreamworld..as it really is! and then there was “that” with it..
    never could just ONE day go by..into nighttime and to bed..”ok” never!
    I always used to wonder.. cant he just let me have THIS?
    this one gorgeous day.. …can I lay my head down in peace and joy when I get home?
    no way
    id always wonder why did he even take me..making me feel im STEALING these wonderful moments..how dare I enjoy them…
    guilty for enjoying it because he couldn’t? I don’t know. but I was all joyful there…and that’s how I remember it..and id love to go back (alone or with others!)
    I will never forget Ashville!

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    • I do love it here. I’ve been rethinking moving right away, because I know if I do I will miss it. The only problem is separating a traumatic past from the present. Maybe if I can do that, I won’t feel so bad about staying here. You can’t run away from your past, and maybe that’s what I’m trying to do.


      • i see you have to REALLY soul search..because many of us have trauma/attachments to places and ALSO have other legit reasons to move (winter/financial) so you can make moving positive too and not at all running … youll know when its the right time and freeing.. and not running.. id have to move for financial as that’s a huge stress in itself.. I mean ..prices similar to NYC??? same with DC area..its getting there…even Maryland! a 1 bedroom for $1500+ is very common/the norm now..even on the outskirts (hour commute into DC)
        id be running TO “my life” if I had less financial stress… I want to run TO me,not away..
        “fade into focus” wherever you move, there YOU are! and its not the place…so yes just rest on it:)
        when /IF you move youll still be in touch deeply with all of your past hurts and traumas.. youre good at that! a change of scenery wont make it go ..and that’s a good thing.. I believe youll stay grounded in all your truths wherever you go.. but nothing wrong with having something better once in a while too! so also make sure youre not “punishing” yourself either by “staying” where things happened too.. there is a flip side to that coin!
        for that matter I OBSESS at times over moving BACK to a place (of trauma and hurt) a place I haven’t lived in for 2 decades!!
        I just want to be there
        maybe I just want to visit.. feel it…
        (childhood/family home/well into early adulthood/20’s)
        id MOVE There… just because! just because that’s where I lived… where it all went down.. its ..still me there..
        but its a place…its just a place…
        but they hold powerful feelings.
        especially when the people are no longer there
        and all you have is the remnant.. the place
        and a ghost like re enacting…

        Liked by 1 person

  10. is there not a famous author from Ashville? probably a few.. but after visiting there , I wanted to read up on it some more later on and discovered that there was a young woman who became famous as an author.. writing her very first book from Ashville NC and I remember thinking, yeah no wonder! what a PERFECT place to WRITE! inspiring…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thomas Wolfe. He wrote “Look Homeward, Angel. ” His home here is one of the landmarks. I know there are other writers too, but as far as I know, Wolfe is the most famous.


  11. its so healthy for humans to move when they feel that itch to.. change IS good! I can see why youd like the change of Florida living too. I am in Virgina/Maryland Dc area my whole life and winters take their toll. and BIG CITY Life is taking its toll… you cannot even so much as WALK at the wrong pace or on the wrong side of the escalator without getting knocked down.. you RUN for buses waving your arms and still miss it.. you jump into metro doors as they are closing on you… and its non stop… non stop harassment too.. which I frequently mention here, and if you are not from a big city area,you could find it doubtful what I say ..(people online have suggested I am lying lol) that I get “flirted with” daily.. they think im bragging when I am shaking and in tears over it..enough to move…
    I don’t consider it flirting in a gentlemanly way..but harassment pure and simple.. besides I really would just like a day )or week , month or YEAR) without it….
    I can have Summer all year long as well.. I love Spring and Fall but who doesn’t? they are mild and in between and not worth tolerating a winter sometimes…
    if you have to get outside and commute to work daily..Winter is a distress..
    or in 0 degrees wait 45 minutes for a bus…
    a part of me liked this! I miss being ok…
    I found my commute relaxing no matter the weather as just being independent ,and not too anxious to be out there in the world…was huge for me…something to be proud of..
    if I was younger.. id still try that attitude on… for its worth it.. but I also feel its my age.time to slow down.. nothing to prove anymore I DID IT already.. so I know I can…
    no need to run around like the youngins lol
    just a simple life… is what I want..
    I feel no competition..to keep up woth anyone.. friends my age .. do not relate.. theyre still in the game hustling and bustling.. to acquire things..
    but they come to me to get them the very very best and that makes me feel good (my frugal skills.. they all have events where they want $300 dresses and I get them brand new for $20 or even less cuz that’s just what I do!) but they still look at me funny.. like.. why aren’t you here with us at these parties.. they get me out 5 times a year.. then 3, then 1-2…then……………….none….
    since I lived in nc before I thought maybe again.. but I keep thinking about Alabama.. and even New England states..like ..Vermont or Maine…New Hampshire.. Connecticut.. (winter though)
    and Colorado… and Arizona!!
    these are the ones that oft run through my mind.. I LOVE dry /desert heat……
    but the new American weather pattern these days is SCARY….
    what was once dry and hot is now flooded and cold….

    and YES ive wanted to just up and run away!! I even thought to post on craigslist to find another random stranger wanting to do the same thing.. lol.. just not brave enough.. and might find weirdos and stalkers.. brave enough to post.. and read responses , not to do it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I decided I have to think this over more, not just do something on impulse. I may still move, but I think I’m going to have to plan for it. I did realize that probably the biggest reason for wanting to move is to escape from bad memories I associate with here, not because I don’t love it here, because I do. I’ll probably have to find a roommate situation and have a job lined up, or I may just stay here and visit my son in Florida frequently, since it’s only a day’s drive. I’m going to just wait and pray about it for now.


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