June 29, 2008

Time for a change

So...I've decided to move to a new blog. Not for any scary or negative reasons; it just felt like the right thing to do.

For those who want the nitty-gritty without reading all the particulars:
The new blog is and will always be open to all who'd like to continue to read my writing. I hope a good deal of you will want to.

To get the url for the new place, all you need to do is leave a request in the comments of this post (and be sure to include your email in the specified field above the comment box--it won't be published; only I'll see it). Or, alternately, you can email me a request for the link. My email can be found to the right, in the sidebar under the "about" section.

When you leave a comment or send an email, I will email you the link to the new place as soon as it's ready, which should be within a day or two.

I've had a marvelous time writing this blog, and I hope to have a doubly-marvelous time at the new one. I've been so grateful for and heartened by all my readers here, and I've been honored to have gotten the opportunity to know all of you. I hope you will continue to visit me at the new place.

Those are the basics. If you'd like to read more about the why's of the move, click the link below.

Continue reading "Time for a change" »

June 14, 2008

Conversations with Other Women

When I was young, I loved you so much it scared the fuck out of me. So much that I wouldn't dare tell you. So much that I wouldn't dare ask you to love me back as much. Because I didn't think that kind of love got given to girls like me. I loved you so much that I told myself I didn't.

When we were a couple, I used to fantasize about us in the future.

About us meeting up again when we were older. In some diner, in Manhattan or London. After we hadn't seen each other in decades.

Because you see, even when I was with you I knew we wouldn't end up.

That we wouldn't wouldn't end.

Because I didn't dare dream of love neverending.

So I dreamed of: Love. Never. Ending.

And I dreamed of you meeting up with me decades later in a coffee shop, our lives long separate and full of things we hadn't shared together. The coffee shop smelled slightly of stale cigarette smoke and strongly of brewed coffee. Your hair had gray in it. You still looked good to me, though. And I imagined you speaking quietly and sadly. I imagined the world had worn on you a bit. You were more tired, less prone to judge. I imagined you could, mostly, just see me. Not me with symbols or measurements. You just saw me, sitting there, a human. Me, and the long stretch from when we were young and together through to now. A long path. But nothing had gotten less. The connection, the need for each other, still there after all these years.

In the scene, though, we still held back. We had a very politely intense conversation. And I can't remember what I imagined back then we said to each other; I just remember the look I imagined being on your face. It was full of "should have beens" and "could have dones." I remember you being less ashamed of your human sentimentality. I remember me imagining us both at different times on the verge of misty eyes. But not actually crying. I don't remember me imagining us touching. I remember looking down at my hands around my coffee mug. And looking at your face. I remember wanting to reach out and touch your hand or your face. But i don't remember imagining me doing it.

I never fantasized about what happened after the conversation in the shop. I kept us suspended there, older, more world-weary, you more capable of seeing me, sitting across from each other in a booth in a coffee shop, touching each other without touching.

When we were still a couple, I once asked if you imagined me in the future. And you told me you thought I could do extraordinary things. But that you weren't sure if I had the capability to live up to my potential.

For years after we ended, when I did anything, I saw two things concurrently: myself doing it, and you watching me doing it and making a judgement on what I was doing. I walked through the world still trying to be worthy of your love. Was I being interesting enough? Too bourgeois? Was I informed enough about world events? Could I expound impressively on politics? Philosophy? Would the books I was reading and the films I was seeing impress you or make you sneer? Was I wanted enough by others? Was I living up to my potential or falling short?

Was I extraordinary enough?

The answer was always no.

At some point, some year, I stopped thinking about what you would think. At least directly. But, though it became not about you specifically, the fear of not being extraordinary enough remained. There was this constant belief that I had to be "more special" (than what?) and achieve something (what?) that said something (what? to whom?). And my assessment was that I was always falling short. I won't blame this all on you. This was already a budding fear of mine well before you said what you said. But I loved you. And you were supposed to care about me, to believe in me. And that's what you believed about me--that I might never be capable of being as good as I could be. You drove the last nail of my own shaky sense of self into my no-confidence coffin, and it stuck.

These days, though, I'm trying to let go of the whole "supernova or empty space; no other options" mentality. When I can manage to let go of it, I find that's where happiness lies. I'm ready to be happy.

These days, I'm almost at the age at which, when I was 21, I imagined us being when we met in the coffee shop.

But these days, I don't fantasize about meeting up with you anymore.

And these days, for the first time since we ended, I believe that if we did meet up, it wouldn't be like I'd imagined. Because, I'm no longer the girl I was then. And I haven't grown into the woman I imagined myself to be back then.

And I can also see for the first time that I'm not going to grow into the woman you imagined me to be, either. Though your words were like a curse that led me toward that fate for a long time, I'm not headed in that direction anymore.

Recently, a friend brought me news of you, unsolicited. I heard you were asking after me, as I've been told you always do. I was told you talked in great depth about our connection to each other. You told this friend-in-common that I was the one person who knew you best in the world; who truly understood you at the deepest levels. Not that I had been, at one time. That I was. That you still think I am that one person who knows you. After all these years of non-communication.

It was suggested that instead of asking after me through others for all these years, that you just get in touch with me.

I was told you shook your head ruefully and said, "There's nothing about my life that would be worth telling her."

And now I suddenly remember that another person once told me that you'd said to him that you thought I was you in female form.

And It finally sinks in. After all these years. It was you who feared you might not live up to your potential. You who felt you had to be worth something. When you said that to me, you were saying it to you. You in female form.

Of course, that was a big fear of mine, too. So I suppose we were alike. Except for one difference. I believed in you. I would have been proud of you, no matter how grand or simple your life turned out; no matter how radical or mainstream you became. I was proud of you, even then. Even when we were so young and without newsworthy achievements.

I loved you. So much it scared the fuck out of me. So much that it would have never occurred to me to wonder if you were capable of being as brilliant as I knew you were. So much that I could have never said anything so cruel to you.

So I think we were different, after all.

June 13, 2008

I'm Voting Republican.

I'd never thought the day would come where I'd be saying that, but this just changed my mind. Seriously, you gotta watch it.

June 5, 2008

Mosaic Soothes the Savage Beast

So, like, I know it's all been lightweight, meaningless posts, but all I've been feeling like lately is light amusement.

So. Here's me as a mosaic.

2552291727 A09A7831B5 O-1

(click it if you want to see it larger)

The concept:
1. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
2. Using only the first page of results, and pick one image.
3. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into Big Huge Lab's Mosaic Maker to create a mosaic of the picture answers.

The questions:
1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food? right now?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. What is your favorite drink?
7. What is your dream vacation?
8. What is your favorite dessert?
9. What do you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. What is one word that describes you?
12. What is your flickr name?

(Note: The photos in mine are in the order I liked most aesthetically, not necessarily in order of answers. Also, #12 came up blank for me, so I used two different answers for #7 instead, since I couldn't decide.)

Discovered over at Schmutzie's place. And she found it at this place.

June 1, 2008

Why do I find this so satisfying?


OnePlusYou Quizzes and Widgets

May 21, 2008

Oh. My. God.

Would someone please take my annoying cat away?

Far, far away.

Tony Soprano far away.

Thank you.

May 18, 2008

Can it be my De La Clothes?

Two stories from this weekend.

First story:

I was a having brunch with a (married) friend and I mentioned I was going to go get a massage afterwards. She said something like, "Oh, that's nice," and something in her tone felt weird and made me want to rationalize why I was going...I guess I thought that she was indicating I was being extravagant or something. So I was in the middle of this spiel about how I rarely can afford a massage anymore and how since I'd gotten laid off I couldn't afford many luxuries but blah blah economic stimulus check blah blah new job blah blah extra paycheck this month blah blah blah..." And she said, "Well yeah, but also it's nice because as a single person, it's not always easy to get a lot of human touch and that can be unhealthy to be lacking in, so massage can help with that."

Second story:

I've been doing a massive cleaning project that will probably take up many weekends. This weekend I successfully concluded cleaning out a really huge filing cabinet full of more than 15 years of saved records, writing, and other random stuff. At the back of one of the bottom drawers was a shoebox, which when first opened seemed be full of forgotten electrical cords. But it turned out under those were a whole bunch of letters I'd saved from friends and family and old boyfriends. Two things about this:

1) Some of the cards and letters were so inane, or just running on about nothing special that I couldn't understand why I'd kept them. I thought to myself why I'd saved them, and I know I always used to do this kind of thing because I thought someday when I had kids or grandkids, it might be interesting to them. Now it's looking unlikely I'll have either. But I thought this weekend, "Why the hell would I want to show my grandkids this boring stuff?" And the answer that popped into my head was, "I guess I wanted to show them that I'd been loved." And then I thought, why did I think I'd need to prove that to anyone? Why did I think any future readers wouldn't have believed that without proof?

2) At the bottom of this box I had saved a great number of letters from the man I had a long-term, live-in relationship with for many years. I had no memory I'd saved any of this, or certainly not the extent of what I'd saved. There was even the letter he left behind for me when he moved out of our house for good (why did I save such a painful thing?); and letters from when our relationship was falling apart. But there were also a lot of letters from all the years before that when things were running smoothly; valentines day cards, birthday cards, random notes he left me at different times...many of them expressing deep sentiment. One of them ended with him calling me "my love." I stared at that. And I just couldn't remember anything. I couldn't remember receiving the card. I couldn't remember him ever calling me anything akin to "my love." I couldn't remember those feelings of tenderness exchanged between us. I couldn't remember feeling anything but cut off from that kind of a feeling. I can't remember if when I read that for the first time I felt happy about it or if I returned that sentiment of if all along I'd just felt dead to it and thought I felt something else. I can't remember what it feels like to think you're really in love with someone.

So; concluding question for the weekend:

Is there a point at which, after too much neglect of touch and real mutual affection, that it just becomes impossible to tap into that stuff anymore? Is there a point at which the it becomes irreversible and it's just all numbness; like the receptors for that get wiped out?

Does it mean reminding myself I had connections with others through old letters and getting massages and having occasional sex with someone I'm not completely into, just to be able to have sex, is about all I'm going to be able to expect at this point?

Because that'd just about break my heart.

I shredded the fucking letters, by the way. All of them, from everyone. It felt like a curse on myself if I kept them. I don't want the future me to have to need evidence to prove to someone (or myself) that once, long ago, I had love in my life. I don't want that to be who I become.

I'd like to die with people loving me right until the end. If that happens, there would be no need for proof. So I got rid of them in a gesture of faith that maybe it's not too late. But for some reason I still am feeling afraid of those questions above.

Because if there isn't a point at which tenderness disappears and doesn't come back, wouldn't I have been feeling it by now already?

Comment for me, baby.

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