“If growing up means it would be beneath my dignity to climb a tree, I’ll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!”
I moved to Orlando full-time in December of 1996. I rented a small 1 bedroom apartment for about $500 a month, which was good, because I was only making $6.10 an hour.
This was the first apartment I rented in Neverland.
“There is a saying in the Neverland that, every time you breathe, a grown-up dies.”
I moved to Florida after college, not knowing what I was going to do with my life, stuck between childhood and adulthood, surrounded by pirates and mermaids. I rented apartment after apartment, looking for good deals in convenient places.
Orlando is a neverland, as I’m sure many other places in the world are. People are constantly going, moving, flying, never settling, never landing.
I stumbled into a career – one could question how grown up of a career it is.
“I’m a little bird that has broken out of the egg.”
Eventually, I began to grow up, little by little, breaking out of the egg, and not stopping there. I got married. I had my own child. I got divorced.
But I continued renting in Neverland. My roots remained shallow. The cost of renting went up. The last apartment was a two bedroom for $912. And that was a good deal.
“Dreams do come true, if only we wish hard enough. You can have anything in life if only you will sacrifice everything else for it.”
And now, feeling very grown-up, I am looking at houses. And like the house built for Wendy, they are houses made of roots. Family is here. Career is here. Friends are here.
It’s a crazy process. I still feel very much the child, though, grown up at the same time. Hopefully, I won’t have to sacrifice everything for this.
But it feels good to be buying in Neverland, and growing roots in Neverland.
I still will never grow up. Not me!
All quotes by JM Barrie (Peter Pan)