Best wishes to anyone who actually knows “how” to fucking stay.
Best wishes to anyone who actually knows “how” to fucking stay.
NYC Subway // Scott Glover // 2012
I woke today, chest weighted and head racing. I dreamed that Kristen and I had moved to Brooklyn NY. I don’t get it. I don’t ask for it. I don’t even visualize things like that consciously much anymore. So I suppose the residual, fingerprints that stay behind tend to find their way to surface in suspicious ways. Or maybe the empath part of me is screaming things to my face.
I could smell the wood and feel the unevenness of the floor. The brushing past door frames of the apartment and seeing the scuff marks along the bottoms with their layers of gray. Scattered shadows dancing across the ceiling while moving a lampshade. The weathering across the stoop, and it’s oddly comforting hearth welcome (we don’t even have those in Texas). The sound of cardboard boxes sliding across a gritted floor.
I wiped the damp snowing off of my face.
It’s penetrating to wake up like this. It’s like wires pulling me across thousands of miles. A stapling of notes to the back of my head. They echo, they ring, and they resonate. It will fuck with me, and linger. As things like this constantly challenge my comfort zone, rattling any kind of idling that I have. It makes me add up everything that I have seen in life and ask myself “is this all you ever want to see?”. And my answer is always and absolutely, definitely, “no”.
She‘s been gone for sometime now. I tiptoe around the haziness of what was, and what it leaves behind. I somehow forgot the way she smells. Or maybe I distanced it away, hoping that it’s absence would make finding it again that much more exorbitant.
I do know that I fully worry about this winter ahead. And what it brings. My thanksgiving, Xmas, and new years will be finding their way into the stitches of course. It’s all part of it, a never-ceasing storm when you feel everything too much.
And at the end of the day, please just fucking put me on that plane.
Working through the seasons. Pressed up against the ceiling. Pushing down on me. – The XX, Lips
“When my absence doesn’t alter your life, then my presence has no meaning in it.” – Unknown
I could rattle on about anger but I’m not. I could stumble through some epiphany of “what does anything mean anymore” regarding the deafening roar of the present but I’m not. I could say that “hey oh I’m not sad at all”, but I won’t. Because it’s mostly untrue. I could braid any of the previous into some kind of frail “self-help bullshit” story like I have in the past but I will try not to. Because I’m really not compelled to do any of that. As of now.
So exactly what? I guess I would say that I am mostly numb. Outlined in shades of abandonment. Definitely let down. Slightly shocked, but then again not really. Do I care? Absolutely. Do I contain the energy to feel like I need to add resolution to anything? Of course not. Did I behave and adhere to things that are solely my own? I feel I did. I don’t claim a perfection of behavior by any means but I do have a predictable “relationship regiment” that I am likely to follow. Mostly simple things. I don’t lie. I have not been unfaithful in 22 yrs to anyone that I have been romantically involved with. I don’t rally in manipulation nor do I subplot mind games to outwit the obstacles of love. I trust easy. I trust the honesty that I receive, and I value that brutal honesty highly.
Nothing is perfect. We are not wired that way. We are littered in flaws. It’s ok, I understand human consciousness becomes oblivious at times. Like tunnel vision, the blurring of sidelines, choices become less apparent all the time…we fall, we fail – I get it – over and over. But still, ultimately when you step back (and you should do that quite often), you always have to be ready to own your damn life decisions. The good and the bad. You know people can preach about “tough love” and whatnot.. Yes. It’s not rocket science. Life owes you nothing. Ever. There is no fine print in the book of the world that says “if you do this, you will get that”. That just does not exist. In every sense of this phrase “Always be mindful of your fucking actions, they will paint your story across your face. They will turn the pretty in you, into the ugly that other people see“. And that to me, is the most disheartening residual fallout in relationships. I never give up on people easy. I rarely throw in the towel until I absolutely have to. I am always the first person that’s there to pick you up, holding the pieces against my side saying “this is fixable, just give it the time – it’s ok”.
It’s the cancer of half-truths that are sewn into what you want to read as ‘your narrative’. I don’t fully understand how people begin to wear that. They would rather re write their story (ex.” ghosting”) and make it something else so that they can stand outside of the reality of their own choices. It’s easy math I understand, in our brittle lifespan no one wants to feel discord about anything they do – but sometimes you need to step back and say “hey I fucked up, I made a mistake – and I am truly sorry”.
In 46 years of living, I can emphatically say that I can count on less fingers of one hand – the number of people who are capable of even making a sincere statement such as that. And that is why I am numb today. And probably tomorrow. And I’m sure for the next good while. I am tired of making excuses for that behavior. I grow fucking weary of all the nights wrestling with “why is it a fucking chore for someone to believe that this isn’t appropriate – I know inside it’s not, so why would I attempt to convince myself that it is?”. Breathe decently. It defines you. Your heart does count for something. If you are not happy where you are, then change it. People will get the fuck over it. But understand that there are finite ramifications in everything you do. Even when you run away from something, it’s still fucking waiting there at 3am. Sometimes you really have to destroy everything in your comfort zone to find your peace, and it’s ok – we are human. But also in doing that, you must say “I know what I did. I see how it hurt, I see who it hurt and next time, maybe in the next venture it will be different. I will be different. I will know then that I am still trying to find my way.”
It tires me. I can’t fix what was broke before I was even there. No one can. That is fucking on you. Why I thought I could change something, was asinine. It was my fail, so it’s my fall. And I will miss pieces of it every single day. You will never see what was right, until you admit to yourself what was wrong. And I guess it takes people a life time of bullshit thrown at them to find that.
So find it.
“The loneliest moment in someone’s life is when they are watching their whole world fall apart, and all they can do is stare blankly.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald
Some people are better at hiding the disasters, and some wear them like a story across their forehead. You would be surprised at how you will come to know the looks and the mental flinching of personalities when someone has went through any sort of trauma in relationships. Which in actuality, pretty much covers all of us in the functioning world. We all handle it differently on layers and levels, depending on how an individual is wired. I tend to be like a sponge and absorb things very fast, so much that they leave long-lasting fingerprints that never really shave away completely. I know some minds that don’t even shudder around anyone, ever. I wonder if people like that are more like monsters on the inside, somehow staving off the ability to show empathy about anything except for what is the “absolute now”. Some carry it more everyday and some slide out from underneath it all.
I have definitely had struggles with letting things go. I can, and have had unsettled emotions in the past for months and for even years. Love, hate and discord all play and string together more than anyone would think. There has always been this dance that they do. It’s a process, there is grieving and all that – we all know. It’s the cookie mix in the bowl that you cannot ever seem to get all out, but eventually you end up washing whats left away. It’s inevitable, it’s sad, and it feels like too much wasted time. But when it arrives, like an insect that lights on the back of your neck – it delivers the utter and most profound, loud impacted detachment on the human psyche that I know. The art of simply not caring anymore. When it finally ceases to haunt you, it unhooks from your conscious and then and only then are we able to close the chapters. And maybe this time you have to be the monster. Anger is the tool that can fan the flames and eventually snuff them out.
You have to fight in the end to reel back what they took, and use it to rebuild and reprogram things that were lost. It’s always a fight. You will struggle to regain it. And anyone that tells you differently, has not fought enough of those battles. Yet.
A: Dear snake, I ask why that you would hurt me?
S: I will never hurt you. I am always beside you. I offer everything comforting, and loving. I care unconditionally about being close to you always.
A: I don’t exactly feel safe with you. But I know that you care. I will be ok with that.
S: *bite *swallow *leave
A: Why did you bite me, and leave marks that will never go away? Why did you swallow and devour the things that I thought were sacred within our minds? Why did you hide so far away when I needed you the most?
S: I’m a snake.
Art by Camille 2016
It resonates after all, even after all this time. If you don’t think I absolutely know the trail that is left after all of this you are completely wrong. And it’s all delightfully refreshing, where I am right at this minute. Today. Right here. Right fucking now. I do remember what it’s like to have my chest begin to swell. You take a small part of the person every time it happens.
Its momentum walks me through piles of shallow gestures. The subtleties that seemed so penetrating. Not so much anymore.
I threw that key in the pool. If you want it, go fucking get it.
“Just close the door and let me do what I need.
Cause it’s better for us, If you just let me leave.”
Art by Camille Lackey // CVCAMILLE 2016
It’s just all about how we clean our insides up. Repair, walk away and hide from the outside world. You lean your face against a cold pane of glass and begin to decide about how to unwind everything again. Like pulling arteries out of our arms. The discomfort of being tied to things that wire you deep down. To dismiss it is like dragging sand paper across your face, and finding that revealing reflection of everything just being ‘ok’.
How you let it go and how you let it slip out from under you, is the real challenge. It’s a crawl. I think of swimming underwater at night, the feeling of being totally surrounded but also being very completely alone. An inability to breathe alongside the quicksanding thoughts, overwhelmed and held down. And then knowing that you are standing awake right in the middle of it all. It’s a wonder ones’ chest does not just cave in on itself, and then we’d be more surprised at the face we have to paint on and later wipe off before we sleep.
Even anger being your tool, channel that. Sharpen that. Make it your instrument and let it push you. I find myself chewing on glass through it. And eventually you will reach that momentum. And the tide is so very fucking important. It is the heat under your skin. It launched me through a burning wall twenty stories high, through the distance and past the decent. And the jaw finds the ground, and jars the ringing in your head. It all never makes much sense and then you feel like you want to set everything on fire, everything that is being peeled off of you in your totally misshapen story.
I stood up. It was just me and the dark against the concrete. I walked and I could hear the rain on the leaves. I remembered how every step felt and sounded when I walked along pebbles and wood aside a towering staircase and orange flickering windows. It fades, and they all run together. The vivid turns grey, and all of the loudness makes me feel deaf and still.
We let go. It’s a gift that kills us when we hold it, and bleeds us when we cast it out. The skin shears from my knees as I erase the start and redirect the ending over and over in my head. I strive to find comfort in falling and knowing that each of us are alone and never owed to feel like someone has to be there. The stars do not always aim that way. And regardless of how many heads are in your ballroom, the inept ‘conscious decisions’ of yours are still, very alone.
Drive it away, warm your hands in it all. Don’t forget the ‘I’m about to fall’ feeling in their eyes. It’s more divine than all of it together. It means more to me that way, than how it was or how I thought it would be. The gaze in crumpled sheets two inches away from my face, that’s all I can really care about now. And if that moment counted, then that’s really the only moments that I care to find a home for anymore.
“I was silent, attentive, I made a conscious effort to smile, nod, stand, and perform the millions of gestures that constitute life on earth. I studied these gestures until they became reflexes again. But I was haunted by the idea that I remembered her wrong, and somehow I was wrong about everything.”
-Solaris (Soderberg 2012)