Brian (Pauls brother) and I hit barnes and noble tonight for me to get some quality writing in and for brian to get out of the house for awhile. I came across a book in the clearance section called Writing For Self-Discovery. I had brought along my notebooks so I went ahead and sat in the cafe and started reading the damn thing. The first exercise on the very first page (which surprised me as most books go into more theory on why you should write before going to the nitty gritty) was to sit in one spot and write about what’s around you. Pick and object and go from there. This is what occurred:
barnes and noble cafe. people. feeling anxious. left breast has slight pains from being anxious. feeling stupid sitting solo at the cafe table with my white painted fingernails, people milling about. various people studying. remembering the cool cafe in Berkeley, CA where all the CalState kids went to. drank coffee. study. college. missing school. thinking of my father. small silver urn around my neck. thin people. beautiful people. grad school. college university. hard tables/chairs. people still here. sitting with Cathleen at the cafe. her sister Carolyn who was way cooler. why is it that people with “Ca” beginning names are called “cat”? on some people it sounds wrong. on others it sounds right. what can one say about the name lisa? derived from Elizabeth. fear to run. flight or fight. i ‘m in a public place and i’m scared.
dreaming about my father more. i’m not sure but it dawns on me in the bathroom tonight that the dreams are a realization he’s okay. he was younger and happier looking. there were scars on his forehead. “Dad, I say,” where are those scars from?” and he points to my necklace — the small silver urn with some of his ashes on it that i wear daily. My father, close to my heart.
i was watching la femme nikita the other night with brian and i saw what i wanted to be — her. Nikita. she is tall, blonde and perfect. except i don’t want to be blonde, just tall and perfect. and she’s was wearing this long black skirt that hung low over her hips and there was an inch or so of skin showing between her shirt and the damn skirt. with her pale skin and deep blue eyes. she looked amazingly exotic. and that was my inspiration. that is what i want to be. i have to lose 100lbs.
i remember when i was 14? 15? I weighed 140? 150 pounds. I was like 5’9 or so. And I remember laying on my bed at night, obsessing about my weight and running my hands over my concave stomach and thinking “i’m never going to be fat. i’m not going to allow myself to get past this point in weight.”
that was 1/2 a life ago!
been reading more journals online again. going through diarist.net and sorting by women and ages and reading generally anything of anyone within my age group. and i realize that the 25-32 age bracket is nearly empty — not empty but it’s like what overcomes people between that age group to not write. i’m looking for a REASON and i’m finding it. Ana Voog is 34. Cheryl Tigs is a mom at 54. She can, next year, legally qualify for the AARP. I have 30 whole years left before I need to. And for once I smile. At the cafe. Where the cute goth girl works.
I’m obsessed about ages. People think i’m 22. Brian thought I was 22 or 23. No one believes I just turned 28. But i’m obsessed with other people’s ages. When someone tells me a story, I almost always ask “how old are they?” so that i can make the comment of “she’s immature” or “he should have known better”. and it’s stupid to gauge other people’s life by my age. at 28 i should have accomplished many things and i haven’t. but in a way, i’ve accomplished more than other people ever will. because i took chances. i took the chance, no matter how stupid, on flying to SF with nothing and making a go of it. and when that didn’t work, of driving cross country solo to another state and trying again. and seeing those stupid “jesus knows” signs along the highway. meeting paul for the first time in atlanta. BUT the thing is, i did it. myself. these are my stories and i know lots and lots of people who don’t have the balls to leave within 50 miles of where they were born.
west texas sucked.
my dad was 45 when i was born.
and today i really like me, imperfections and all.
so tonight, when the urge struck me to redesign again (and i really do like this new design btw), i felt it. the cold crushing feeling in my chest. and it’s different from all the anxiety attacks i had before. because this time i was not obsessing about anything — I WAS FREAKING WORKING IN PHOTOSHOP. and i start crying. paul is freaking out because i can’t breathe (or so i say between the sobs). my pulse is normal but my chest felt like a ton of bricks landed on it. i call the 24 hour hot line my hmo has set up and i get picked up on the first ring. i tell the woman, mary, what is going on. she assures me i’m not having a heart attack. “you’re on klonopin” she says. “what’s your dosage?” i tell her i’m taking the bare minimum these days – .5mgs .25 in the morning and sometimes .25 later in the after noon. “did you take a dose?” she asks. “yes, i replied — a few moments ago”. klonopin takes 30 minutes to kick in before it works. she talks to me. calms me down. turns out she has done over 15 years as a coronary specialist nurse. i’m not having a heart attack. i’m so low risk it’s disgusting. ‘but this crushing” i keep telling her. it hurts. i don’t know what to do. the klonopin has been my miracle drug for the last two weeks. tonight was worse because it was fast and furious. and i’m so scared something is going on with me. she tells me if the pain doesn’t stop within the next 15 minutes, take another klonopin. after an hour, if there is still pain call. they are open 24 hours. i can be seen.
within an hour brian and i were at 7-11 buying slurpees and a big bite.