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Shit. I missed the beginning of the month. I knew that if I waited to start, I would forget. Yesterday was beautiful, rain with sun, one of the most vibrant rainbows I've ever seen. The day before, I took a walk by the lake, just because I felt like it. Spring is on its way...or perhaps it's just a tease. I long for a time without jackets or sweatshirts, to feel the fresh air on my skin. Oh New Mexico. I will miss the warm, dry heat and yellow sun that baked through and made me forget snow and ice.
Paralysis. The incapability of performing movement. Sometimes it results from illness or accidents. At times from fear. Sometimes because we worry about what will happen if we do move, if we do act. Sometimes it's because we are overwhelmed, and it's paralysis due to stress. Sometimes I get sleep paralysis, and lie in bed praying that it's impermanent, that if I scream loud enough inside, eventually my body will catch up with my mind, and I'll be able to move again. It doesn't matter what the cause is, paralysis is never a positive thing. Help me break the cycle. Please.
I just watched Love Actually. It was incredibly cute, of course. It made me cry, even though I've seen it before. Strange how it can even make me, the loneliest of lonelies, feel like there is hope. For now, I live vicariously. I wait. I'll watch people hug at the airport. I'll hug my mom at the airport. That can be good enough. But I'm getting tired of waiting. One day… I know that there are probably steps I could take to increase the chances, and speed things along. Just not sure if I'm ready for the steps yet. Darn.
I haven't left the house at all today, and don't really plan to. It's cold and rainy. Sometimes I like rain, it cleanses, it smells nice. But not when it is cold.
I'm dumb. I think too much. I dwell on things that won't get fixed by my pondering. I have an over-active imagination. I feel alone even when I'm surrounded by people. I don't spend enough time with the people who truly care about me. I doubt that anyone TRULY cares about me. Then I tell myself I'm dumb. Then I think too much. Then I dwell on things…
I had a ridiculous nightmare last night. Although the more I tell people about it, the more I figure out why I dreamed it. Stems from fears of losing control, of not being able to perform my duties to par, of worries about how others may perceive me. It is interesting how even the most bizarre dreams are rooted in reality. Sometimes I wish my brain would take a rest from the stress. Waking up with angry veins, pulsing of adrenaline…not the most restful way to begin a stressful week. Wouldn't it be glorious if we could control our dreams?
I was thinking about labels today. I think that's where a lot of my recent problems with myself have their roots, and also the sorority's recent issues. If someone has more than one label, then are the labels necessarily connected with each other in other people's minds? How do I explain …I can't come up with a good parallel example …however, can someone keep different parts of their identities separate, without one identity reflecting on another. I'm making no sense.
I told three more people this weekend. Again, the overwhelming relief. It can only get better from here. I hope.
It was a day for curling up in bed and staying there for as long as possible before the guilt began to sink in. How lovely it was to spend half the day wrapped in gray flannel fuzzy sheets. Especially after an interesting evening. I am still trying to figure out what to make of this weekend. I think it was good. I hope that it will help me. I think that I am ok. As the wind whipped against my window and light faded in and out of clouds and curtains, I felt ok. Freedom from self-oppression is marvelous.
The bubbles in my diet coke make a faint crackling sound as they burst against the plastic cup. It reminds me of Saturday mornings when I was young, pouring milk into my rice krispies and putting my ear next to the bowl, expecting to hear tiny faint whispers, "snap, crackle, pop" from those weird elf guys on the box. I was a strange child, I suppose. Heck, I think I am still a strange child. But perhaps that is a good thing. To retain some semblance of childhood for as long as possible helps buffer the scariness of real life.
I might be able to visit a summer field school friend in a few weeks. Excited beyond words. It is hard to describe the feeling you get when you realize that you are going to be able to see someone that you thought you would never see again. It's like she's coming back from the dead, or maybe I am. It's funny how comfortable and close we became in just six weeks. I wish she went to Northwestern. We would have been best friends. People enter and leave our lives so quickly…the best we can do is cherish every moment.
Every time I complain about being too full, I think about all those who don't have enough to eat.
OK that's a lie. I'm a bad person.
I've been thinking a lot about being lonely. As much as I am lonely (and I am), I have friends who want me around. And I think about life after undergrad…I hear stories from those who have gone before me about being alone in a new city. I am a solitary person anyway…will I welcome that sort of life? I don't think so. Once you've been with others, it's hard to be alone.
I should be going to the library. I should be doing research. I should be sending some e-mails. I should call my aunt and thank her. I should stop obsessing about things that cannot be. I should stop worrying so much. I should stop procrastinating. I should stop daydreaming. I should be saving money. I should look for other summer jobs. I should be more social. I should stop being afraid of people. I should make an effort to meet new people. I should stop being so self-critical.
I should just be me.
"Should" looks strange now.
Celebrating birthdays with friends is probably one of the few activities that I will remember for years after college. We had so many of them, each unique and interesting. Last night was Jess's 21st, and while I could only stay for a while, because all the of-agers were going out, it was still nice to spend that time with friends, laughing about weird paper plates and Peeps on ice cream cake and the Cosmo ‘book club'. And while I probably won't remember last night after 10 years, I'll remember the birthdays as a whole, safe and happy with fun friends.
I've been at work at the library for over 4 hours now. The shift actually went a lot quicker than I expected. I checked e-mail, sent e-mail, watched my buddy list gradually grow as my friends woke up at normal hours and went about their Saturday morning routines, made a rough outline for my paper, did a crossword online but didn't finish it, ate lunch at Norris with EQ.
A note on last night: people are interesting to watch, and interactions are complicated. I have formed my own opinion about something in particular, but shall forever keep it to myself.
She found that there is nothing more motivating, when it comes to homework, than an attempt to forget about something else. Though she dreads all the writing, she knows that it will distract, consume her consciousness, so that all that remains of her obsession is a constant subconscious hum. She hopes that through seclusion and diligent work, she'll accomplish her academic goals, and manage to ignore all other distractions. There's only one problem with this scenario: it's very lonely. Thus perpetuating her cycle of thought.
She knows that if she can get through the next few days, she'll be home.
I'm going home the day after tomorrow. It seems surreal, I still have so much to do before I leave. It will be good for me to get away from here for a while, even though it won't be too restful or exciting. I'm still going to be doing a lot of ‘work'. But at least I'll be with family. A lot of things are stressing me out lately, so it will be nice to be at least semi-removed from it for a while. And kitties!
I don't think she realizes her effect. I have to be the strong one.
I found out today that a very nice lady from church died recently. She was only 51, had a husband, and a daughter who is mentally retarded. She and her daughter were very close. It was sad news…she was a lovely person. Mom said she went to the wake, and there were literally hundreds of people in line to console her family. She said it was like it was a diplomat's funeral or something. But she was just a wonderful lady with a warm smile who liked to volunteer and knew how to live. She will be missed by all.
The baby was lying on her stomach on the floor on a blanket, while her frazzled mother made a cell phone call. No one was paying attention to the baby except a tired college girl standing in line at customer service after her second plane cancellation. The college girl marveled at the strength of the baby, who held her head up with her neck and back muscles, arching to look up at the girl for at least 10 minutes straight. The baby looked into the girl's eyes, and smiled. Her mother scooped her up and turned her away. Bye baby.
I'm going into "Jeopardy!" withdrawal. I missed it yesterday due to traveling, and today because they were showing BASKETBALL instead. I miss gathering with my girls in the TV room with diet coke and popcorn, all shouting out answers that are usually only 50% correct, and making fun of the lame contestant stories and mocking Alex Trebek's corny jokes and impersonations. I glance at my watch at 3:30pm (standard Jeopardy time in Chicago) and look longingly at the Rochester TV, which mocks me, suggests that I wait until 7:30, only to spit BASKETBALL in my face.
What is INCREDIBLY PATHETIC?
Spring break in the snow. Seems like an oxymoron. That's Rochester for you. And it's funny, I almost don't mind. I long for the warmth, and my house is so cold that my fingers are frozen constantly. But it's not so bad.
Went out for ice cream with a friend from high school, one of 3 from the old days that I still stay in touch with. Inspired me to stay in touch with the people of today that I love, after we've gone our separate ways. Because you never know when you are going to see each other again.
I managed to skip entry 20. I went to view march…and it wasn't there. Silly me. I am writing this on april 1st. I was thinking about april fools day last night. It's a very mean day. Most pranks are not nice. One time in middle school, a friend put elmers glue in a lotion bottle, and then asked this girl if she wanted some, which she then rubbed into her hands…it was funny, but mean. I felt a little bad. I think it would be better to have an April good deed day. Do something that people don't expect, but instead of doing it TO them, you do it for them.
What is it about uncertainty that is so frightening? You'd think it would be exciting, invigorating. I mean, all the possibilities! You'd think that would be less frightening than being stuck with only one option, or with no options at all. But yet, for some reason, I'd rather know exactly what I'm doing tomorrow, next week, during the summer, next year, and the year after that. At the expense of limitless options and possibilities.
I've made multiple contacts for museum jobs in Rochester for the summer. Hope that one of them works out.
I need to learn to drive. Damn.
I heard back today from a woman at the Strong Museum. For those who are not Rochesterians, the Strong Museum is a children's museum…has a huge collection of toys, etc, it's actually pretty cool. I am applying for an internship that involves me researching, analyzing and cataloguing a collection of things from a 19th century traveling magician's show. How cool is that?? It sounds like a lot of work, but that's all right with me. See, things really can work out for the best. Haven't heard back from the other museums yet. I'm sure I will soon. Wish me luck.
I feel like I must say more things that I immediately regret saying than most people. It just happens all the time. Why can't I think before I speak? It's not like I'm trying to offend people, it just happens sometimes. And I feel like I am especially prone to "foot in mouth." It must happen to other people too…I just feel so bad when I say something dumb, especially if it really is hurtful. And I really am generally sensitive to other people's feelings…I'm not happy unless everyone around me is too.
I miss school people. End, spring break!
Saw a movie that I really enjoyed. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It was confusing, neurotic…I loved it. Right now I'm watching figure skating. Trying to avoid having to have conversations with anyone. I'm ready for break to be over, to go back to school. I'm not sure I'm ready for all the work. But I'm ready for friends, for new classes, for Evanston.
I can't believe it's almost April. I can't believe it's almost summer. I can't believe how pointless this entry has been. The words are just not flowing tonight. Ok, back to watching the figure skating.
I am such a delinquent 100 words person. I can't write in retrospect very well, I don't even remember what happened on the 25th. So I'll write about today. Long plane/El ride, but no cancellations this time. Smooth. Happy to be back at ‘home.' Beautiful day, warm and partly sunny. Some little flowers are blooming, bunnies are out, warm breeze off the lake. Thunderstorm at night. Lots of cable TV (Trading Spaces, mmm). Diet Dr. Pepper. Papa John's. Hearing about other people's spring break adventures, and looking at pictures. Gossiping. Excited for new classes. Nervous too. I love spring quarter!
I've found that time and mental distancing are my best friends in the battle against trouble. I made it through the entire day being back at school, without problem feelings. It's better this way. I am happier, just knowing that I'm not causing problems for myself, and won't cause problems for others. I want to be problem-free, Hakuna matata. It worked today (today is not the 26th, P.S.). I think that being at home helped. Refocus, realize that life goes on. Tomorrow will be busy, so hopefully I can continue this. Will avoidance fix everything? Perhaps, if I am lucky.
I never thought that changing one little thing about myself externally could change how I feel in general. I got a rather radical haircut, for me anyway, the girl whose hair has always been all one length, varying from mid-back to chin length, for 10 years. And not only is it shorter, and layered, it has also become curly.
I feel like a different person.
It's hard to describe. I'm still me, essentially. But for some reason I feel bouncier, I have a different self-image. Do other people see me differently? Not just the external, but the essence of me?
How does a place, a location where you spend time, become a ‘home'? Is it the other people who share the space with you? The duration of time you spend living there? The experiences? Often at college we use the term ‘home' to describe a dorm, an apartment, a sorority house. Can we have two ‘homes'? Can a place that was once a home become a non-home? Home is where the heart is…what the heck does that mean anyway? Home is the place where you hang your hat…a coat rack? Arg. Three years of this and I still don't know.
My eyelids slowly open, no haze of sleep after a comfortable night. It feels natural that I should be awake, light is streaming through the windows. I left the curtains parted, a window open halfway, allowing the cool night breeze to rejuvenate my stuffy room. I listen to two birds (probably the cause of my rising) call back and forth, answering in coded conversation, first a high chirp, then a long low whistle. Strange, the light seems pink, not the warm yellow sun of late morning. Glance at the clock- 6:00am. Surprised, I look out the window…awake with the sunrise.
I helped two little boys get out of a hole in the ground today. They had crawled down to play in this little cement-lined space that surrounds windows on the basement level of the buildings in our quad. Their nine-year-old legs were too short to climb out. I heard voices first, struggling, then looked over and saw their heads peeking over the edge. "Are you guys stuck?" "Yeah." I went over. Pulled them out. They thanked me profusely. Later when I walked through the quad again, they ran over to thank me again. It made me happy. Funny little kids.
My computer is dying, wheezing its last gasps for breath as the fan sputters and turns unevenly, and the hard drive clatters a death rattle of clicks and clanks (I read about death rattles in many books, and never understood what exactly a death rattle sounds like…that's probably a good thing). It has been my trusty little friend…ok that's a lie, it has been ‘untrusty', I've already had to replace the hard drive once, and I really just feel like throwing it out the window, pulling the plug on the life-support and letting it go. The replacement comes next week.
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