A couple of weeks ago I had several days off in a row so I decided to go somewhere, anywhere. I asked around questioning my friends where I should go and while they all gave me great ideas it was something my mom said that inspired me. I asked her where to go and we chatted back and forth and then as the subject was nearly dropped out of the blue she goes, "There's a lot to do in Missouri!" This struck me as kind of an odd statement because all I knew about Missouri was that it had the Gateway Arch but I was intrigued so I looked into it. And the more I looked the more I saw.
I've been struggling with loneliness lately. I think the hardest part of this trip was the drive there. Nearly 5 hours of me alone in my car. No distractions from other people or things to do. Just hours to think and feel alone. I tried to get people to call me as I drove because I wanted connection and distraction but everyone was too busy. So instead I played podcasts, listened to music, screamed because I could, and generally felt a little insane. But finally, I arrived at St. Louis. The first thing I did was walk along the mural mile.
I'll always remember the mural mile as the place where I had the most amazing piss of my life.
I had driven straight through no stopping, not even for gas (I am amazed at the gas mileage of my car) and man did I have to pee! I'm walking around trying to appreciate the beauty of the murals but all I can think about is how I am about to piss myself. I'm regretting not stopping at the last gas station I saw when it occurs to me... "I came here alone. Technically I can do anything and no one is here to judge me." That was when I came to the decision that I was going to pee outside. I took one more glance around to confirm what I already knew, there was not a toilet in sight and nearly no people as well. And then I scouted for the perfect spot.
I found it on the backside of the murals. The front of the murals has artwork with tags partially obscuring the art and the back is all tags and a great expanse of what feels like a construction zone. It's really day and night when you look at the front versus the back of the murals. The front feels like what you are supposed to see, what everyone expects. The back feels like the wild wild west where anything could happen, full of nicks and crannies. It was in one of these hidden spots that I pulled down my pants, bearing my ass to the world, and peed as I'd never peed before!
To say this was the highlight of my trip is absurd yet completely true. Very seldom do you experience such freedom to do something taboo and know that no one can stop you.
What I actually tell people my favorite thing was during the trip is when I went to City Museum. It's amazing! Sadly I don't have many photos or videos of it because I was trying to enjoy myself... and ignore how bad I physically felt. On my solo trip, I was not only dealing with emotional problems and cold weather but I had food poisoning. What a fun surprise. Thanks, universe!
That being said, the city museum is a crazy cool place! There were so many things to climb, and look at, and touch. It's perfect for me. This is an absolute must experience! If I'm ever in the area again I am stopping by for sure.
When you enter the first thing you see is this cave-like structure and you crawl in and then you just keep going up and around and discovering all these neat little hidey-holes until you climb so far you're in this wood like area with branches and slides and then you keep going and suddenly you're in an arcade. And just outside of the arcade are the most amazing chairs I've ever seen in the world. They're like a top. You sit in them and dip and spin around. I didn't care how bad my stomach felt I enjoyed the hell out of these chairs! But I digress.
If you keep climbing up city museum you'll find an Egyptian area and then you look out the window and discover there's a whole new world outside ready to explore. So you make your way outside and you climb and slide and you pretend to fly a plane. And then when you're ready to leave if you're like me, you top it all off by going down the 10 story slide.
City museum you and I shall meet again! I don't know when but this I swear.
Now you may be thinking, "Damn she's sick, cold, and lonely surely she's done adventuring?" "Nah, that ain't me."
Here's the thing about me, even in my darkest moments when I'm struggling with who I am, where I belong in the world, and who I'm supposed to be there's one thing constantly driving me forward... Curiosity. I have to know what's out there. I have to understand. I don't know why, but I do. I crave the new and exciting and I feel lost when I'm stagnant. I have trouble sitting still even when I know rest is good for me.
On my way out of town, there was one last thing I wanted to see. Laumeier Sculpture Park. Sadly unlike the City Museum, there were far fewer things that I was allowed to climb on.
By this time in my journey, I was physically feeling better and had moments where I really felt like myself but my emotional journey was and is far from over. I'd love to end this story on a high note and say I felt better after having a 3-day vacation by myself but I'd go on to have a series of several mini break downs. Emotional growth is hard and painful but I've stopped fighting the pain. I've given in and accepted the pain. I'm ready to grow... whatever that ends up meaning.
To be continued.
A behind the scenes look at what I'm up to