August 28, 2012

dark though it is

this big sad thing happened, and I'm going to tell you about it but also I'm not going to tell you about it.

in the darkness there is writing, there is running (on my terrible leg, because necessity wins over injury, at least briefly). there is putting one foot in front of the other, stringing together a breath and a breath and a breath, until morning turns to afternoon and then to evening. my closet is piled high with clothes I can't put away, and I haven't really slept.

in times of trouble the desire to X myself is very strong. I don't mean the desire to kill myself. I mean, the desire to erase. not for the first time I've idly considered pulling down this blog. I retire facebook, I delete twitter from my phone. I don't know what this impulse is, exactly, although I have seen it before. at first I gave into the urge, but then I resisted. partly because two (!) of my cousins had babies yesterday and I really want to see those new little girls. but mostly because erasing these things feels like stuffing my head in the sand, like running away from a big sad thing. and I will not run away.

ok, technology: you win.

life is terrifically messy. in order to live day to day, we convince ourselves that we have control. but most of the time the shit that happens just happens. it's inconvenient and sloppy and it doesn't give a fuck about the schedule we set for ourselves. cancer happens and your brother's suicide happens and car accidents happen. but also, huge unexpected bonus checks happen. your grandmother you haven't seen in 25 years happens. free coffee from strangers happens. love happens.

"expect nothing," said alice walker. "live frugally on surprise."

you can pull your hair in anguish and gnash your teeth and say WHAT AM I GOING TO DO? you can curse and scream and say why me? why now? you can bury your head in your hands and pray for a rewind button, for a different page of the choose your own adventure book, for deliverance. I have done all those things. they don't work. you raise your head and blink and whatever bomb went off in your lap is still there, smoldering away.

I fell in love. it came unexpectedly, at a bad time, and changed everything. for the better. it was incredibly messy. it erased everything I thought I knew about who I was and what I would do. it defied the thing we begin telling ourselves, once we reach an age: that things don't really happen like in books. from the minute it started I thought, this thing is a freight train, bigger than me, and in motion.

I got on. it felt inevitable. there was, in fact, no choice in the matter.

I have known such friendship, such happiness. I have known all along that it might not last, and somehow the knowing made everything keener and more exquisite. I have yearned and longed, I have wanted, I have cried into my pillow, overcome by the force of my wanting. I hit the core, the heart of my heart. inside the heart of my heart I found such profound kindness, such humor and playfulness, such beauty and cheerfulness and joy. such certainty. the better person inside of me. the best person inside of me.

it blew up. life is beyond our control, messy and headstrong, a bomb, a freight train. I love, I love, I love. it is the rightest thing I've ever had. I would not take any of it back.