Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Waiting


*I have been trying to publish this blog for weeks... I'm a nutcase right now.*

I hate waiting. I would rather go to the gynecologist and get the most intrusive personal examination ever than to wait on anything. I HATE to wait. I hate depending on other people to give me information or decide when they wanna do something that impacts me. I hate waiting on people to get ready, hate waiting to get somewhere, I hate waiting for something to happen. I hate the people who tell me "just wait and give it time" or the people who say things like "If it's meant to be it will happen". That is bullshit. That is a bullshit, passive aggressive way to let life happen to you instead of taking charge of your own life and LIVING it. I hate waiting for things to fall into place, I hate waiting for wounds to heal, I hate waiting on people to contact me, I hate waiting on food to cook. I hate waiting for life to finally shape itself into something resembling something that won't make me wanna shoot myself in the face and I hate waiting for someone else to confirm what I already know as if that will make it somehow more true.

Yes my hating to wait is about control. The only thing I hate more that waiting is not being in control of the things that affect my life. If that makes me a control freak, so be it, though I don't really wanna control anyone else's life, just my own, so I don't think I qualify. I hate losing control because the repercussions are too far reaching. I don't wanna lose control in my career, I don't wanna lose control with my family and I certainly never again want to lose control in love. I'm not one of those people who looks forward to "loving without limits" and all that bullshit. I don't look forward to falling head over heels in love and totally not being in control of what I'm experiencing and what's happening to me. I'm not excited. Nor am I convinced that this is somehow some wonderful feeling that I'm losing out on.

Wait correction: it's not the falling in love that I don't want. It’s the crawling back out of it when I hit bottom that I am trying to avoid.

Yes I do have to be in control, the exception only being unless I am giving up control to someone I explicitly trust to take just as good care of me as I do. I can count the number of people I trust like that on 2 fingers. No, you're probably not one of the 2. But I digress.

I said all of this to say; I hate waiting. Why this angry and rather long diatribe about waiting? Because that is exactly what I'm doing right now. Exactly what I have been doing for quite some time now. And I don't necessarily mean a few days... I mean more like... ohhh 10 months or so. I'm waiting. And just in case you missed it, I hate to wait. I am waiting on a phone call, and not one of those "wow it' s so nice to hear from you how's life" phone calls but one of those earth shattering, mountain moving, heart breaking phone calls that you don't really remember the specifics of, just remember the empty feeling as it resonates with you. So yes, I'm waiting on a phone call. From 1 of 2 places; from the man in my life who is unfortunately enough stationed in Iraq at this current moment and is not here to calm my random neurosis at 5:47 am or from one of his superiors telling me he is hurt or dead. The latter is what I fear. For the last 10 months I have been waiting on this phone call, steeling myself against the possibility that it may, in fact, be coming. Every time my phone rings and it's a number a don't recognize, my blood turns cold and my heart stops beating for just a second. I stand very still as though the sheer force of my fear will somehow change the information waiting for me on the other side of hello. In that first moment, a wave of nausea sweeps over me and I can't decide if I should pick up the phone or run and hide under my bed. I always pick up the phone. And for the second right after I say hello, time remains suspended in the air around me. So far I've been lucky. No phone calls that shatter the world. But I'm waiting.

GODDAMMIT I HATE WAITING.

I try not to watch the news anymore. It does nothing but upset me. But there is this constant struggle between knowing and not knowing that goes on in my brain and the controlling part of me always wins because I always need to know. I need to prepare, I guess, in some strange way, for that which you can never really prepare for.

I had a disturbing dream last night. For those of you that don't know me very well I dream in movies by the way. The phone rings and it's 3am . The only person who calls me that late is, well, no one so I'm a little thrown. Seeing as how I have absolutely no motor skills when I first wake up, I knock over a few things in the pursuit of making the ringing of my phone stop. I try to mumble out a hello but it comes out more like "hwwwewww". An unfamiliar voice on the other end asks me if I am La. I think maybe I say yes. I only catch, "This is... notify you... United States Air Force...died...sorry for your loss." I don't remember much after that. I remember a funeral and a touching speech I make somehow mustering eloquence and grace that I don't think I will ever actually have if this becomes a movie based on a true story. I remember being angry, wishing that he would listen to me and realize that I was right, that we would never get the time for there to just be an us. That is what I fear. The lingering questions of "what if" if something were to happen. The always wondering how great we would've been, if maybe we would have had that wedding we kept talking about, took that trip to Brazil, if only we hadn't both been so wrapped up in our fucking careers. The slow passing of the few memories I have of us. I don't want this to ever be one of those things I look back on and just remember fondly. And I certainly don't want to hear anyone tell me, "Just wait and give it time."

How do you accurately depict pain? Can you ever really prepare for it? Are there steps that you can take so that even if you experience it, even if you have to feel some of it, you don't have to feel it full throttle, don't have to live under the weight of it so that it doesn't kill you? Someone get back to me on this...

It's the little things that make you fall in love with a person. The little things that move you from friendship to relationship, the little things that make you feel something you never opened yourself up to he possibility of feeling. It is the little things that bring you from someone you care a lot about to someone you love, and those same little things that can reverse the feeling and take you from love to contempt. It was the little things that made me fall for him. I love to watch him drive. Yes I know that sounds crazy but it's true. Can't really explain myself there. But I love to watch him drive. I love watching him stare at himself in the mirror first thing in the morning when he gets out of the shower and thinks no one is looking. That moment, when his armor is down, the titles are gone, and he's just him, is the most beautiful thing in the world to watch. I love the way he makes me walk in front of him when we're out (partially to look at my ass but mostly to ensure that I'm safe), or how he puts his hands gently on my hips to guide me away from running into something the way I inevitably always do. I love the way he insisted on remembering my favorite flower (calla lillies by the way) and trying to send it to me because I told him no man had ever sent me flowers, on asking me about my day, everyday just to make sure I didn't fall into the habit of letting everyone talk without saying anything. I love the way his voice gets all deep and scratchy when he's sleepy and the way he whines and tries to call me babygirl when he wants his way. I love the fact that he stepped in to take care of his whole family when his uncle died without complaining or prompting just because he felt it was the right thing to do. I love the way he is with his mother, his sister, grandmother. I love the fact that when he kisses me, he holds my face, as if to demand that he have my complete and total attention, which he more than deserves. I love the fact that when he says my name it is in a tone especially reserved for me, that he uses with no one else. I love him because he refuses to say "I love you" in some offhand obligatory manner and says it only when he feels inwardly prompted and that makes me feel even more loved. I love the way he tells me I'm beautiful even when I disagree, and even the paranoid way he looks around when he's in public as if sizing up everyone as a potential threat. (He's a cop and in the Air Force, give him a break.) I love him for the way he worries about everyone and for some reason wants to save everyone no matter how hard he plays at indifference.

It really is truly the little things that make all the difference in the world. And when a person is gone, it is those little things that you miss the most, those little things that sting and hurt you because they're gone. It is those little things that you don't know to appreciate until you are in the position of having those little things be nothing but swiftly fading memories that maybe, if you wait long enough, time will blur the edges and eventually they'll be gone for good.

As of right now, I'm still waiting. Waiting for something to happen to us, waiting for the other shoe to drop because somewhere in my mind I believe this is too good to be true. And God knows, I hate to wait. I always told him that we were never going to get the opportunity to just be us and be together and have a normal relationship. For the first time in my life, I pray to God that I'm wrong. Because the truth is I don't want to stop waiting if it means that phone call will never come. In the meantime, I commit it all to paper. In hopes that if the time comes, and the waiting stops, it won't all just be some distant memory but instead will be vivid and fresh in my mind as though I just fell in love yesterday.

Friday, May 6, 2005

Solitary Confinement

As I have been prone to doing for almost the last year now, I find myself reflecting on some things at 4:25 in the morning. Tonight, while listening to "Bitter" by Me'shell Ndegeocello (a genius album by the way), I am thinking about myself, or more accurately the myself I have become.

Often, there are times I don't recognize me. I'm quite far from the person I was even a short time ago and in some ways, this is good because Lord knows there have been some things about myself that even I could do without. However, I am considering the things I have lost which I believe have hindered me. In some ways, I have regressed. There was a time when I was shy. Now I know what you're thinking; there is absolutely no way in hell that La has ever been shy a day in her life. And as usual you are WRONG.

I was shy for a very long time, until I FORCED myself to grow out of it. However, slowly but surely I have slipped back into some of my shy ways. Maybe a better word for it is guarded. I was a very guarded child because I didn't have the most ideal of all childhoods. I was very distrustful of people, very quiet, timid even. Again I'm sure that many think that these aren't adjectives that one would ever use to describe me but that just goes to further prove that there are very few people on this planet that really KNOW me like they think they do, because even now, these are words that could be used to describe me as of late.

So I'm gonna call some things to your attention that, if you don't know me that well like many of you reading this don't, are gonna shock you. First and foremost, for those of you who have known me since freshman year, I want you to think back at who I was. (Those of you that just met me last year you can still do this as well.) I want you to remember me in the Cafe, think of me in Drew, with my sister at football games or various other school events. I want you to think, really concentrate very hard on who I was then. Do you see me? Do you feel as though you have a good picture? Ok.

Now I want you to picture who I am now. Different girl? It should be. It would be if you took the time to notice the small discrepancies. Do you see me much anymore? Do you talk to me as often? Do you hear about the party I went to last weekend or the date I went on last week? Do you see me in class, active and involved, excited to be in class? Do you see me surrounded by people on the yard? (Ok some things just aren't gonna change; I can't help that).

Now I want you to look at me, I'm inviting you here (very rare opportunity) I want you to look at me very closely. Focus. Look at my eyes. Do you see something different that you didn't see in the girl who basically lived up on the penthouse level of Drew? You should. If you don't, let me know... I’ve got some beautiful ocean front property in Kansas I would love to sell you.

I have always believed that emotional trauma should somehow be physically evident. So that people can witness the breaking, the change of something inherent in you so they can know where you're coming from. Let me tell you who I am now. And I want you to listen because you won't get this opportunity again and there will be a test.

I am a girl, who spends most of her time alone in her room, a self imposed solitary confinement I adopted last year and haven't yet grown out of a need for. I am a girl who mostly ignores the millions of calls on her cell phone, lets you leave a message and then I decide if I want to call you back. Because honestly I just don't wanna talk. I am a girl that avoids the knocks at her door because sometimes she just cannot fathom having to entertain someone else. I am a girl who is cynical, who is apathetic, sarcastic and mean. I am a girl who loves her friends very deeply and would do anything for them, but just can't handle them right now or their own self-indulgent conversations about the issues in their lives they have blown up in their own minds just to have some issue. I am a girl in search of peace which I don't think I will ever find. I am a girl that doesn't have any faith in people, none at all, because not only have they continuously let me down, no one has ever even bothered to try to be any different. I am a girl that mainly, only speaks when spoken to, and can often be found walking behind a huge group of her "friends" looking somewhat distant and detached. I am a girl prone to often bouts of silence that you may snap me out of with a few words and that I dismiss the melancholy of with a smile. I am a girl who wanders around the city for hours alone, listening to music while crying and writing on a park bench. I am a girl that is considering moving to a totally different city, very soon, and not telling anyone I'm gone just so I can be as anonymous as I feel.

I have gone invisible. And this is not entirely by coincidence. See people get this idea of you, this image of who you should be, based on what you look like, where you're from, small insignificant trivia about you. Are we ever really this person? Most often times not. I am nothing like who I "should" be, although to the outside world I am exactly what I should be. And I guess so long as your idea is confirmed then you don't really care to look past the surface and see if there's anything else, to see if you're actually correct.

I realize no one really knows me. No one really knows my heart. And I take part responsibility in that, because there has been a regression for me, a backsliding if you will, to that guarded little girl I used to be. And I'm not ready to let go of her just yet. Because even though I keep myself closely guarded, how many people have bothered to notice a change? I can probably count the number on one hand, not even close to needing two.

Who sees me? Who bothered to notice a change?

I want you to go back and picture that girl from freshman year again. See her clearly in your head? Now I want you to look for her tomorrow on the yard. She died a long time ago, but there's a good chance that someone who looks remarkably like her is sitting alone in her room, ignoring her phone.