Last month I started to write a new entry, then stopped. Then started again, and stopped.
Truthfully I’m glad I never worked through what I had been writing. It was mostly whiny, self-pitying bullshit, and while I’m a believer in therapy – never having gone myself, but I’ve had a few (ex)-boyfriends and family members who’ve been – there’s a time and a place for it. And a blog can be therapy, but not to the point of excessive self-indulgence. When I recognized that the tone of it was, “Look at all these bad things I’m feeling” versus “Why am I feeling this way?” I knew it was time to step away.
I am glad that I did.
Since the last semester of my Master’s career has gotten underway I haven’t noticed the same problems being, well, much of a problem anymore. I’m not sure if that’s because I’m too busy to worry about things that had been plaguing me since before the summer, and it was just a simple case of having too much time on my hands. Now that I’m feeling productive and needed on some level, the feelings of inadequacy have mostly dissipated. (Notice: I said mostly. That’s another stupid barrel of worms.)
There is still the disconnect that sometimes troubles me. The wondering, the questioning of every single thing I’ve known and felt, thinking, “What’s the point anymore?” And those moments are so clearly punctuated by nothing, the feeling of absolute nothing, like I could shuck off everything from my life and walk out the front door, off into the distance, toward god knows what. But it’s a poetic image, isn’t it? End scene. Fade out. We’re not ready for that part of the play yet.
I had considered therapy, actually, to deal with some of the whatthefuckery that had been clogging up my cognitive ability and reducing me to a trembling mass of tears – in dramatic fashion – on the floor. I’ve been told more than once that I need it, that everyone needs it. Maybe one of these days I’ll move past the stage of recognition and actually go talk to someone. In the meantime, there is still me, and there is still writing.
And holy shit, I applied for graduation. I guess this is all really happening, isn’t it?
My thesis/creative project is, in drafts, half complete. It feels strange to be sitting on 40+ pages cranked out really in about two weeks total, because I think, “Where was this my entire grad school career?” I subscribe entirely to Anne Lamott and her advice on the writing process. Get it down, she says. Get the shitty first draft down and out of the way, and build from there.
But there is still that idiot teenager inside of me who thinks everything must be beautiful and profound from the start, no revisions, because that’s how Mme. Duras would do it. She said she never had to write drafts. The draft was the thing, was the final product, was the manuscript, was the novel. I am stopping short of calling my idol a liar. I would never do that, I love her too much. But there is a twinge of doubt, a flicker of disbelief, but then I am at her feet again and since I’ve never been able to emulate her, I’ll just swallow my bitter tears and keep my nose to the grind.
As a side note: There is something to be said for being passionate about what you do. I know I’m in the right place when I can’t wait for it to be MWF.
Speaking of writing, aside from the thesis/creative project, I’ve been writing about my vagina.
It’s weird. I think the Republicans trying to get all up in it are to blame.
A couple weekends ago I traveled to Baltimore to see my dearie Lu. It was so nice to visit with her, not having seen her since January this year, right before she and baby left for San Jose. We stayed in the Inner Harbor, past the stadium and ballpark where the Ravens and Orioles play. The weather was a little gross, so we didn’t get to walk around too much, but University of Baltimore looks like a neat campus in a cool area. Some people say I’d be fine in Baltimore, others say I’d get shot. But it looked all right to me. Plus, they have a good MFA program, offer a nonfiction track, and they’re near water. I wouldn’t mind that so much.
Probably the coolest was being a bus ride away from Penn Station. Lu and I hopped on board on a Saturday morning and within an hour were in D.C. to peruse the galleries and museums of the Smithsonian variety. Then, after some bad weather and a few late-night sprints through the airport, it was back to Indiana by Sunday night. A short visit, yes, but a very full visit.
Look at us. I can’t describe how nice, and decent, and relieving, and fortunate it is to have a friend who, even though geography and marriage/family statuses have changed drastically, can still remain a friend. And every time I see Lu it’s like we’re just picking up where we left off, and I know that no matter how much time goes by in-between visits, we’ll always be in each other’s lives.
Today was and remains a day for Neil Young. I’m going to marry the song “Harvest,” so save the date.
Currently reading: Davy Rothbart‘s My Heart is an Idiot.
Thoughts so far: Rothbart is straightforward, unapologetic, and real. And my life is sucky and boring, and needs some Davy-inspired excitement in it.
Even though my mind’s been a-clutter lately – and even further compounded in the last couple of days – my room is not. Instead of letting my brain wander down some dusty, dirty path it’s better off avoiding, I cleaned today.
Ran the vacuum.
Windexed the protective glass over my dresser and night stand.
Dusted my windows and sills. And all the flat surfaces around my garage-room.
Washed my sheets, my blankets, made my bed again for the first time in a week.
Collaging stuff away, clothes away, towels away.
Away, away, away. Everything away and in its place.
Now if only I could turn that inward.