Thursday, February 19, 2009

Lostmissing #11

Lostmissing is a public art project -- I’d love it if you’d participate.


Anonymous said...

Ok....that passage was astounding. And touching. And brutally honest. One of my own friendships went lostmissing 7 years ago. She was someone I thought would one day attend my funeral or vice versa it had that type of permanence, our friendship, but I guess I was the only person involved in a friendship the entire time, just a dancin with myseh-helf. For years my shoulder was her therapist, she cried on it so many times and often needed me to take care of her and it never bothered me because that's why they they came up with the idea of a family of choice.

I usually preferred to fall apart in solitude, like the way you wrote that you feel like you have to look ok on the outside.

Seven years ago, my inside broke through and I was suddenly unable to function so of course I turned to her because why wouldn't I, family of choice and whatnot. The first time I literally needed her as in needing someone to maybe bring me some food or take me to a hospital or just sit in the room with me to remind me I wasn't dead, that kind of need, and she came over for a little while. Our friendship of many years ended the very next day via email. Perfect timing.

My entire life had just collapsed around me the day before, mind you, and the events that precipitated my collapse left me so emotionally devastated that it felt medical, I could hardly manage to bathe or feed myself, I was unable to leave my apartment without having a severe panic attack and for the first time I needed her to help me hold the pieces together instead of the other way around and now I'm reading an email accusing me of being selfish because I forgot she had mentioned several months earlier that her parents were going to be in town and wouldn't it be nice if you joined us for dinner? I guess I was supposed to call that day to make plans and I didn't but phones go both ways and even if she had called to remind me I couldn't have gone anyway because I'd been obliterated and why would she even think I would be able to?

Her email says I don't want your issues dragging me down and besides you've become so self centered all of a sudden, so maybe we shouldn't be friends anymore. And that was that. Someone who had moved across the country just to be near me and a relationship I thought of as stability and permanence and it ended with an email. I would have been less shocked if Orion had emailed me to say I am so over this part of the universe so I am outta here, don't bother looking up at night because you won't see me there.

I never saw her again either.

Over the years the confusion anger and sadness subsided, and now I sometimes think about things we did together and how much fun I thought we were both having, I mean,I had a blast. I think about the laughter and how she could make me laugh so hard even when I was secretly dead inside, or that sometimes I would get angry because it hurt to laugh that hard but she wouldn't stop it so I couldn't stop either and so I was pissed off...angrily laughing my ass off, which sounds impossible but I know it's real because I experienced it. I think.

So what you wrote about the memories that are supposed to be happy but are now just sadness and re-living moments as painful that were once beautiful really resonated with me. Just wanted to share that with you.

I will try to call you in the near future re: what we discussed. Usually I am up all night so calling at the times you suggested would be no problem. I have been blessed with a brief reprieve from insomnia and so I've actually been going to sleep when it's dark outside for the past week. But insomnia is one relationship that I know won't abandon me, and she'll be back any day (night?) now. Hope we can chat soon!

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

Elian, the passage in question comes from a comment from Davka... Here's her blog:

And yes it's a brilliant assessment -- makes me feel I have to more clearly indicate when the words are my own, though -- I'll have to think about that... Although it does add to the collective experience of the project not to know, I think (and I'm avoiding direct citations in case the posters end up anywhere, I don't know, "illegal" or something).

And wow, "Our friendship of many years ended the very next day via email. Perfect timing." That's horrifying!

And what -- "I never saw her again either." Oh, no!!!

Yes yes, we have lots to talk about -- I can't wait...

Oh, and maybe you want to make your own lostmissing poster for the series with this story (or I could -- we should chat about it!)

Love --