The thing I think I can think about right now is that I have enough time to write all the words I could ever want to write.
- Take it in bullet, pellet, blow dart form.
- Specifics. Concrete behaviors. Rooted actions.
- I cooked. I ate. I put my plate in the dishwasher.
- I let it go.
- I took a shower. Washed my hair. Made it possible for me to go to work in the morning with food to eat there and a snappy outfit. Snappy is overselling it. I will be there with clothes on that will not get me fired – my usual bar. I may, all things going well, paint my nails.
- I thought about the man who is not my boyfriend. If I let that go, what does that mean?
- I got the external fan going on my hot little laptop.
- I need to read a book and not just a business book for work. My word well is running dangerously dry.
- I need to get back into my body even if the body says no. Or yes. Or needs a stronger mind at the till to direct it one way or another. Floating around is not all it’s cracked up to be.
- I need to post.
Turns out the only way to get out of a long stretch of not writing is to write. There is fodder: a golden-rimmed Schrodinger’s mirror (which is to say that all mirrors are both haunted and not haunted until such point as you can determine, solidly, that it is haunted), the terrors of tile haze, the American Gods episode before the the NEXT American Gods episode which…uffda, and sitting on the comfortable window seat overlooking the atramentous world as it inches towards the dispiriting inevitability of a 6am Monday morning.
There’s been arguments. Some of which have yet to be resolved. They will be, well before anyone actually says something that moves the needle in any way.
My mother is no longer biding her tongue, which, were it someone other than her, I suppose I would be endlessly supportive. Her no longer biding her tongue means telling my younger sister that she’ll never have grandkids and me, I get nothing, nothing save the unending, unspoken omissions that fill the void. I think she would have said it if she thought it, so for her, it’s already written off. So I slammed the door. And she’s sick. And I shouldn’t have. But I had to, it was so involuntary, a ballpeen hammer to the one small confrontational bone in my body.
It will be forgotten even if it would be healthier to be the straw for either of our camel’s backs. My heart is broken, but like all humans, we move at nothing short of cataclysm.
I realize now that the vulnerability I felt at my last therapy session can’t be the reason to never be vulnerable again. And the driving has to stop the madness. 20 extra minutes out of sheer avoidance. Is this the sort of thing people take pills to fix? I feel like it’s just me knowing it fucks me up and I want to not feel fucked up, so I figure out a workaround. I don’t need help, it’s just my 20 minutes. It’s just me paying to deal with the shit I create. It’s not like I could just not create it. It’s me. There will be shit, no matter what.
I want to just take the bridge again. To figure out how to except the freakout. it just feels so dangerous. I feel physically like all the blood is rushing to my head and my face goes on fire. That seems like something a doctor could help me with if only I hadn’t also concocted, probably around the time my mother got sick, the most genius gift for myself imaginable. A blackout, break the Richter scale fear of doctors. One that I always am 100% certain I could resolve, in the same moment I am 100% sure it won’t be in the next 6 months. One that has been at that point of tension since it developed.
Maybe more tomorrow on that. I need to crash and not think. But I started, and maybe we’ll determine I cannot be stopped.
As a character in my new passion American Gods is wont to say: Angry gets things done.
- A fluttering of memory.
- Slowly creeping around the corner, about to steal in the light of day or having stolen and stepping lightly back into the dark.
- I remember his hand, which he held three times, warm and soft. Instantly caring. I recall even now how I believed as he gripped my palm, did it of his own accord, that this would be precisely how I would like someone who loved me to feel. Not a drop of guile. Pain knowing pain. We could have made each other cry, as I am certain hundreds of others felt that day as they presented their souls to him and he shared yet another breath of his own. It was special not only because it *was* special, but also because it wasn’t. Because it was endless and particular, being seen precisely as you exist and being loved for that person, and not for the potential or lacking there. I wasn’t wanting to be writing, but I wanted to remember that.
- I will forget the bomb cyclone. I will forget the conquered fears. I will forget the strolls, expected and unexpected, shared and on my own, the flurry of people, the moments of quiet. But I hope I don’t forget the way that hand felt.
Worry first about getting something on paper.
So Saturday evening, I lost my guts to my newly purchased twee bathroom trash can six times. I was a horror story of fluids gone awry. I was in misery: a quiet, determined, real misery. It has to have been at least five or more years since the last bout of food poisoning and I’d sort of gone back to the iron gut state of mind so while my desire to eat out was running amok, I didn’t think twice about the rather goopy eggs or the weird butter on the pancakes. I was turning into an food vacuum that couldn’t be swayed from hoovering up anything so long as it was on a plate that came with a price tag. And that evening, I got something I suppose I secretly was after: a hard stop.
My body pulled every emergency break there was. I’d lay in bed, writhing about in discomfort, wondering if I could just ignore it, and then I would have the deeply ingrained, instinctive thought that…no…I couldn’t. And away I went for hours on end. Back and forth. I woke up and had terrible shivers and fever throughout all of Sunday, my sister even going and buying me a whole first aid kit full of ginger ale and saltines and powerade. The world got real glassy. My opinions started to melt into a single hazy space that surrounded me, my thoughts went in there, too. All that remained were the habits of computing and holding out longer than the pain, keeping the fluids in, the covers up. But if I thought anything, I kept telling myself I’d just get up and go to work on Monday because that seemed reasonable.
However, today came and I felt weak enough and dumb enough that I arbitrarily called off. Emailed off. Whatever it is. My counterparts emailed me eagerly asking to help, to let me rest. So I just didn’t go to work today, despite answering emails and doing enough to keep myself from ODing wholly on Dragon Age Let’s Plays and My Cat from Hell episodes on YouTube.
And now, now I’ve done one load of laundry just so I have some clothes to wear and I’ve started the dishwasher. I’ve eaten a sleeve of saltines and drunk some water and the ginger ale and some powerade. I really wish I could come back to life. I kind of feel the fugue state must be broken eventually and I’m a little bit petrified of my actual life and taking back ownership of it so I am floating. Writing this, I think, is a small step towards breaking the bubble. I haven’t been doing this and it’s bugging the hell out of me.
I am ready for therapy – which should happen this week. I am ready for everyone and everything to move an inch in any direction, preferably ahead. I am ready to take off this flannel and chenille combination and just try a life.
I realize now that my D&D character’s story is basically mine. I didn’t intend this, but I realize it now.
She’s a young sage, driven out of her home, her privileged youth by voices and visions. She follows the one lead she has and ends up with someone older, tragic, entirely not right for her. But she stays because this is the first time she’s felt these feelings and she pities him, worries for him, wants to help him. But she can’t help him, he’s too broken and locked in his pain and for her trouble, he sells her out to a man who wants to take her brain apart and understand her gifts. She escapes, but she can’t go backwards and all she wants to do is go backwards.
He said…thank you for being a good friend to me. He actually said that.
I said, with a weighted pause, a pause that surely you would get if you wanted to hear what I was communicating…thank *you* for being a good friend.
What a crock of…
But that’s not true, either. I’m mad about it. I’m mad that 2 years down the line, this is the best he can muster, not that I am not grateful for his friendship, his attention and care. Of course, I know what we said. I know the painful clarification came down and we are essentially just…passing time with one another. Not dating. So it’s not like this is an unfair statement…but it still so totally fucking is.
I am exhausted by the true facts of the case. I am exhausted by always being just wrong enough to understand why everything is the way it is. The unending tedium of “getting it” a thousand years running. I am exhausted that I have to dance for scraps. I am exhausted that his pain just puts everything in stasis and I am exhausted to realize that there is nothing about me that is worth rocking the boat. I am exhausted that I can’t let go of any of it. I can’t choose me versus choosing the avoidance of confrontation. I have no ability to try.
My therapist wants me to, on my own, in my own time, come to the realization – just as my wise friends, my sister…that I have to let it go. I have to leave it alone. And I’m trying. I’m trying to get some air and space. But it just so happens that all of this is taking place when my mother is ill and I hate myself with an extraordinary passion and my skin is painfully dry and I want to tear it off myself and hit myself with mostly metaphoric hammers and sit in my office being silent and fucking things up and go home and be silent and go to work and be silent and go home and be silent and go to work and be silent because everything else feels like my head in the guillotine. But maybe that’s where it belongs.