Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Broken Pieces

It's 4:09 a.m. as I am typing this, sitting in my room in Tampa. It doesn't quite feel like my room anymore, my sanctuary.  It's  become more of an office space. But enough of my things are here that it's familiar, I'm comfortable.

My bed, which I was excited about returning to, isn't as I remember. It feels more firm, and my body doesn't sink into it like it used to. I assume I've just gotten used to my bed at home.

 Nevertheless, I've been sleeping pretty well. Not now obviously, but enough. Four hours here, two hours there. I'll take it as it comes. The angst that has been consuming me lately, has settled. Everything has slowed down.

 Although I have three more days to enjoy, I've already imagined how hard it will be to go home. Because this is as much home as my home in Indiana. Things have changed a little here and there, but it's home. Half of my heart is still here.

And unfortunately, there is no merging of these lives. They are all together separate. Which is odd for me, and maybe why I keep my distance from people.  I have a hard time explaining myself.  My story is broken. Lacking linearity. Peices of me scattered between here and there.

But, tonight was a simple but good night here.

 My mom and I spent some time at a new mall that I've been wanting to see. As we were leaving, we got a cup of hot chocolate and caught the light show, Symphony in Lights. There was an enormous Christmas tree, beautifully lit by tons of colored lights dancing to the music.  It was cute, and I kept wishing my neice and nephew were here to see it.

It reminded me of the Christmases we spent in Nashville, at the Opryland hotel, as a family. Whole. They had the most beautiful trees lit with bright white lights. I saw pictures of those days yesterday. Pictures that I thought had been lost in the fire. (which I'll explain later, as the anniversary is creeping up in a few days) As I recalled those precious memories with my mom, she said, "Life was so complete then." It was as if she'd read my mind. I couldn't have expressed it better. That was before we were broken. Before I knew we'd be broken. Spending holidays seperated.

And while it sounds gloom, the simple truth I've come to know is: There is no wholeness with which to move forward. There are just those memories, that sometimes bridge the divide between these lives.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dear Ugly Truths

Dear Ugly Truths,

You're my confidante, and I'm sorry for breaking our date this week. It's just that you keep reminding me of all of the things that need fixing. While I appreciate you for that, it's not pleasant. It's hard to see myself in you and (assumedly) be seen. Raw.

 Honestly, sometimes you're just too much for me.

Lets reschedule.  I'll do my best to sit with you this weekend.

Until then...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Little Bits of Nothing

I'm sitting in bed with the lights off.  It's 11:15 and I hoped to be asleep hours ago.

I got home from a long day around 6:30 tonight.  My Dad, sweet man that he is, brought takeout home for the both of us. He set my plate on the TV tray adjacent to his, which was all I needed to sit and eat with him, foregoing my room where I normally eat at my desk while doing homework. We watched a show together, a re-run of The Real Housewives of Atlanta. He stays young and hip through these little things; the reality TV shows, the unlikely music, the leather Ecko jackets, all of which keep me laughing and endear him more to me.

So, I ate a little slower tonight and held onto that moment that I know I may long for at a later time, before returning to my room.

But now, here I am. Sitting in the darkness. It's less depressing, than it sounds. It's  comforting for me actually.

This is what I do. To stop thinking about everything and start thinking about the little bits of nothing that fill the empty spaces. I tend to play songs on repeat, which I think may be an attempt to drain my soul of whatever thought or emotion I am mulling over. Sometimes it takes longer than others. Tonight's song is Happiness, which, as it turns out, is not a happy song.

It's less about happiness than it is about acceptance, something I'm working towards in several areas of my life.

Like this insomniac lifestyle. I make peace with it every night as everything around me gets quieter and my mind gets louder. I make peace with it every morning as I sip my coffee and try my best not to complain. I think my body's nagging disagreement with this life is wearing on me the most. My muscles are gripping my bones too tightly, my jaw constantly clenched and there's a constant burning in my stomach.

But all of these things are symptoms of a bigger issue.  It's an anxiety disorder, as I was told three years ago. And there are ways to treat it, when I'm ready.

And that sounds simple enough, except these things that require treatment are the things that are the most me. These idiosyncrasies are the most authentic pieces of me. The other pieces of me that people know, are born of necessity. Rehearsed and perfected. It's these things things that slip out in the darkness that are the truth.

So I  don't think I'm ready. But, maybe speaking of it for the first time and owning it is enough for now. Because readiness, for me, comes in steps. Baby steps.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Momentary Contentment

 The busyness of the week has simmered down leaving nothing for me to hide behind. No meetings and no assignments due in the morning. Which leaves time to just sit, and reflect.

These are not the Friday nights that I dreamt of in younger days. But they are mine nonetheless.

Matter-of-factly, my life as a whole is not what I dreamt of in younger days.

It's funny to say "younger days", as I am only 22. I feel much older though. I have an old-soul as my mother has said. It's hard to explain if you're not one, but I'll try.

 It's like a magnetism that pulls me to the people I need and the people that need me. It's a knowing of things that people say only life can teach. It's sensing people and feeling the weight of their  pain It's being able to see sadness in smiling eyes. It's a need to quickly move beyond the surface, to dig and get to the heart of things.

 It's a passionate, draining, lonely life. But mine nonetheless.

Thankfully, there are others like me that make cameos every now and again. If I didn't know any better, I'd believe that I'd  known them in another life.  Loved them before. There's a connection that's binding and unexplained. Their presence is always fleeting, their purpose, however, is known almost instantly: A piercing reminder that I am not alone.

But, I digress. This is about reflection. And as I sit here on this Friday night I'm content, with little thought of what's going on outside. I'm sure I'll here stories of excitement and adventure when I return to campus on Monday morning. Tales of new loves and memories that were made. And when that moment comes,  I'll probably feel that I missed out.

 I sat in the library with classmates earlier this week,  and what started as a study session quickly became a night full of girl talk. Stories were swapped and I listened without much to tell. I mean, I've got plenty to tell, but not much that fits into those conversations.

 It was an enjoyable time of bonding, but also a  realization of what I said near the end of the night, "I feel like I'm missing out." One of the girls said sweetly, "I wasn't going to say it, but yeah." Her bluntness made me laugh, despite the weight of that confirmation.

And yet, as I sit here I have no desire for excitement or adventure. For now, in this moment,  I'm okay with where I am. I'm okay with this Friday night, with this life. Because they are mine.

 And I'll deal with Monday's feelings when I get to them.

"Dear Friend"

This song "Dear Friend" helped me through a really hard time several  years ago. It played on repeat day after day for quite some time.

I'm always amazed at the power music has over the heart. We all have these songs. They act as headstones for the pieces of us that died somewhere along the way. Monuments of celebration for the events we wish we could relive.

 This one for me, is a headstone.  It forces me to recall memories I'd willingly forgotten. It digs up stories that I'd buried. Refused to tell.

Those will follow, I'm sure. For now though, I'll share this, which tells a story of mine in itself.