Didn't write yesterday and almost didn't today. Feeling off kilter, but I'll be fine. At the office with Joey, the world's cuddliest yellow Lab. He may love his Liz the best but I'm a close second. As for me, I adore him, love bear hugs from him and kisses from a tongue that always smells like corn chips.
Has it ever happened to you that you instinctively know what you need without consciously thinking it through? I think it's that subtle right brain activity that nudges us to order a hamburger when our bodies are low on iron, even though we normally eschew red meat. Or the warning red flags we get about certain people? This week I found myself with a hyper-drive mind, was thinking too much, in too high a gear. So what did I do? From a free music Internet site, I downloaded 37 new songs to learn! That, in and of itself, is impressive right - the ambition to learn 37 new songs, given that my current repertoire is only about 60 songs? But, that's not all. The weird part is that, after my date on Tuesday, and after the writing group on Wednesday, I found a total of 5-6 hours in which I memorized the lyrics to ALL 37 songs!! If you're not a singer, you might not be impressed. If you are, you are stunned by the achievement or you probably think I'm lying! (I'm not). People who know me (especially employees) know I've got a freaky memory. I remember subtle details of a project I worked on 20 years ago, or a phone number from an obscure support group at AT&T that I haven't called for ten years. But the memory is imperfect. I'm the mother who would drive off with a carseat (kid in it) on the top of the car! Anyway, the memorization thing....it had the unplanned for effect that it calmed my overactive mind. For those 5-6 hours, my brain was anesthetized. And!!!! I now know the lyrics to 37 new songs!
I loved my friend's Steve's reaction when I told him what I had done. He has seen my on-steroids project management skills in action as he often visits my office for a change-of-venue place to work. He knows my brain is different than others. So, when I told him of my agitation and what I did to calm the over-activity, he looked at me with admiration and amazement and without thinking, gently placed his hand on the side of my head as if to say (talking to my brain, not me), "You are amazing, I am glad to know you, by putting my hand here, maybe some of that memory will rub off on me, I know you are in pain much of the time, but you are special and I honor you." My brain thanked him - they had a moment.
Writing group was terrific! We had eleven writers of all ilks and talents and James threw down some great prompts. It can be like therapy. One man wrote of his father and started crying. Another woman was there in an attempt to excise pain from a recent loss (thinking someone close to her died). For Liza, writing is always an antidote to her crazy life (just about the only thing she does for herself) and for James, it's what he's best at. We have a female Episcopalian priest who comes to replenish herself and to find her creative muse - important because each week she has to come up with an inspirational sermon for her parishioners. For me, it's therapeutic - I am often astounded at what bubbles up out of me. And, given that much of what I write is dark and slimy, I think I'm glad the dark thoughts find a home on paper and exit my body. Good to expel them. Here is one of the pieces I wrote:
I knew I was cracking up but there was nothing I could do about it. "Pity," I thought, "my life had such promise!" And there was a certain release in giving up, admitting defeat. Just letting all hang out - all of it, the fury, the fear. It couldn't be contained.
When did it start, the giving up? When was it, the scales tipped in favor of insanity? It must have been when Carmen purged my jewelry box, She did that now and then, decided to dump a drawer and cleanse sedimentary layers of crap, plucking worthy object to be saved and organized, throwing much of it away. A drawer here, a closet there. I hated when she did that - it always felt like an invasion, but how could I tell her I wanted to keep the crap, wanted my life and filth preserved just so, like an insect in amber? And so, I clenched my teeth so hard my jaw ached and endured her well-meaning cleansings.
But the jewelry box - oh, the jewelry box. Sure it had become a catch-all for weird stuff like the little packets with the extra buttons you get when you buy a new shirt. There were singleton earrings never to be worn again, and keys to unknown locks.
I know she must have been repulsed - probably got a tissue to pick them up. There were three of them, black, shriveled, gnarled. They were dessicated, little knots of old flesh. Of course, she threw them out - she must have thought some critter had gotten into the box and laid three identical turds.
They were all I had left of the babies - three perfectly formed, full term babies, delivered, one after each other - all silent, all blue. All that was left - their petrified umbilical cords - gone now.So the weekend is upon us. In three days, I'll be writing, "Monday again." And so it goes - week after week, each week the same but different. Each week that holds such promise, sometimes making good, sometimes disappointing, but always marching forward. It is springtime. These are the days when we should make good, harness spring, put it in our step. If you're single like me, maybe you are feeling twitterpated, like in Bambi. For my single friends, I wish you new love. For my married friends I wish you reawakened love. The challenge today. Throw off the woolen feelings of winter. Lighten your spirit. Do something playful and stupid this weekend. Get twitterpated.