I know it's typing and not writing but I'm here and it's not nothing, so I'm doing it. I've got an interview this morning, so there's showering and suiting up for this prostitution gig I'm about to slalom through, hopefully with good result. It's practice nonetheless. And I'm stalling about writing because I don't know what's going to come out, I'm still dangerously close to the place where I would lie in my notebooks because I wasn't sure if Raf was going to read them or not.
To wit, from Kristin, in an email, on cue, all at once:
Good luck today. You are an administrative Goddess. AND you've got a really sweet suit.
I forgot to tell you about my "Interview Club" arrival ritual. Whenever I have an interview or a big meeting, I get there five minutes early, check in with the receptionist, ask where the bathroom is, and go in. I wash my (sweaty) palms, take three deep breaths, smile at myself in the mirror, and re-enact Tyler Durden's speech from Fight Club:
"I talk like you want to talk. I fuck like you want to fuck. I am smart, capable, and most importantly - I am free in all the ways that you are not."
And now all the wind is gone out of my ache. I woke up aching, aching for words before I could even see all the way, knowing I had to rehearse questions and Eat A Good Breakfast and all that. And I swear, following up on Raf and rereading old emails and taking out all the pain and sadness and fondling it all the time - I might as well be one of those people that cuts myself. Really. And I'm not, and fondling my grief is not a way to emotionally eat Wheaties in the morning. When that happened ten years ago with Robert, eventually my mother and I took the little packet - all the notes and moments and the one slightly blurred picture I had of him, worn on the edges from carrying it around - and we tied it up with a ribbon and set it on fire in the backyard. And it was like killing myself at first, and then it worked.
Except I can't take out my insides and set them on fire. There's no heart-brush like a lung-brush, no purge, no cleanse - just words words words and time taking time to pass.
I had insane dreams before waking up, of being on some deserted island with backstage passes to see some artist I don't know, I want to say maybe it was Alicia Keys or someone like that? All getting lead around this mansion everywhere, doors that looked like we were going so far away from where we started from and then right before we finally left and headed into another part it looked like one of the first rooms we saw, like the person taking us around was looking for something and never found it and didn't want to be embarrassed by telling us or whatever it was, and then the sounds got closer as we got closer to this backstage place all outside on this island, and it was just so strange. people going to the bathroom outside and no one thought twice about it. And it was so real in the dream, the singing got closer as we got closer, and I'm wondering if Kristin was singing as she got ready this morning, and then when I woke up at about 7:45 I could have sworn I heard her voice, like she had just left and I could have called out and caught her and that she would have walked back.
I'm just thinking about the interview and everything for today, and I've got to do this stuff myself. I feel like I can't some days, and I've done so much, and I have so much experience to draw back on, and yet none of it seems real and I feel all scared and incapacitated by - well, everything. Life. I feel like I've forgotten how to do so much, and part of me feels like I missed my shot. Even though I know none of that is true. And we were at this coffee shop in Wall, and there was this magnet that knew what I was talking about, that said "It's not too late to be what you might have been" or something, only it said it better. And were I not the woman I am today, I would have stolen it, which would have been all counter-everything, but still.
This is going to take some work, this life of mine, starting with right now. I feel like I'm at the part in the morning pages where there's still another section left that I have to push through, but the cursor is blinking and the morning is passing. I really want to do the interview rehearsal stuff before I get all up and moving.
So I'll pause for the cause and continue tonight.
I am free in all the ways you are not.