Wednesday, December 07, 2011

The ideal

It's only 21 degrees out today, but it feels warm in comparison to yesterday's high of 17, and I'm wondering about what it means to feel energy, any energy, or hope for more, more energy? Because, sometimes, when I get up – like yesterday, or today – I think okay, this seems better, right? I mean, I mostly slept through the night, the bloating isn't too awful, my head is kind of clear. But then that fades so fast – I'm looking at the computer, trying to form a sentence, any sentence. Or no, a specific sentence, I know what it is but now it's gone. Or, once I eat, and then everything's over: more eating, more exhaustion, more overwhelm, more fog in my head, ready for bed, why bed if it never helps, or never helps enough, but still that's what I need.

Okay, here comes that place where my brain just closes off – before I was writing about it, but feeling clearer, now I'm pushing through to try do explain something, anything, what's going on. Squinting my eyes to try to get that thought back, or to get that thought, what was it, what is it, what will it be? Heather, my therapist, said something about how my energy is unpredictable, which is true in a way, but also it's so predictable that no matter what it won't last long and I will crash and find myself thinking when, when will I ever have energy again? This happens every day, usually several times, so I guess I get energy in a way, or I just push through the exhaustion to try and find something on the other side but then there are moments like this where I can’t keep pushing, even though it's the beginning of my day I already feel like it's over and yes of course it's okay to give in, to give into the exhaustion and hope that that helps, even if I can't say that that necessarily helps either.

Negotiating strategies with myself: every day's theme. Negotiating. Strategies. Or, just strategies. Like: how will I get to the doctor's office to get my shot of vitamin D? Okay, don't go on a walk first thing, that way when the appointment time comes around I'll still have a little bit of energy, or at least I won't be so drained that I can't possibly think of it, or maybe I will be that drained, but still I will find it necessary to step outside.

The drain in the bathtub is clogged, so that every time I take a shower it fills up – by the end of the shower, there’s almost a foot of water in the tub, which wouldn't be so annoying except that all that water on my feet in the desert makes them swollen. I just called the landlord, but I wanted to call her before this shower, I mean I did call her before this shower, but I wanted to call her several days ago, so that the drain would be fixed in time for this shower. Maybe I'll close my eyes – not in the shower, just now, close my eyes and see what happens. Not in bed, because I guess I slept, right? I couldn't need more sleep, could I? I mean I always need more sleep, but what does it do for me?

I do like this seasonal affective disorder lightbox this year, I think it does help – two of the bulbs are out, so I called to order more but the 1-800 number seems like it led to someone's personal voicemail and then the website didn't exist anymore, so I think maybe the company went out of business. The bulbs are strange size, I wonder if there will be a way to get more. Okay, close my eyes: stripes of white light with black boxes, the sound of the heat in my apartment turning on the space heater down below, my feet on the cold saltillo tiles that usually I love but I'll admit that in the winter they are a bit too cold, my chest going up and down, back against the back of this chair, my hands feel a bit clammy or maybe just oily from all the coconut oil, do I need more, my head is so far to the right, okay let it go, I do like this purple wall, yes I’m closing my eyes but then opening them to write sentences, jaw kind of tense, oh, I'll need to get a new desk for Seattle, since this one broke when the movers pushed it into the corner, the uneven floors, I had the same desk before and it broke when I moved into my last apartment in San Francisco, I'll need a better one this time, but then the trick is to get the ergonomic keyboard tray removed from this desk and installed on the next one, I hope that's not too difficult.

Gina was wondering what I'll miss about Santa Fe, or no that's not what she said, she said I'm sure there are things you’ll like in Seattle, and other things that you won't. Kind of mysterious – I think she meant the cold, and it's true that I won't miss waiting in the 17-degree weather for the bus, but the cold isn't really one of the things that bothers me about Santa Fe. The only things I will miss are this apartment, the beauty, the light. Hopefully I will find my apartment in the ideal location in Seattle, with a view of something, ideally the downtown skyline, and somewhere I can sit in the occasional sunlight, or just the light – an apartment without mold, with enough space, in the right location location location, that's what I keep repeating to myself: location. Vocation. Temptation. Gradation. Exclamation!

Close my eyes again: a larger white stripe, softer now after I open and close again, there’s my breath again, I do like that feeling in my chest, the sound of the heat again, my fingers, my feet, the awkward position I'm sitting in, can't be good for my back, maybe I'll move forward and try for the ideal that never works.

2 comments:

davka said...

i've spent the last month or so in bed. i try to open jars and it hurts so bad and feels so impossible, i cry. then my lover will say "you can do it!" as if its just a matter of will power and i know he is trying to be sweet, but denying someone's reality is about the most bitter thing you can do and it infuriates me and i break the jar on the floor and say do you think you can come up with anything i haven't thought of? i'm in fucking pain!

anyway- your writing has been really important to me in understanding the development of all this chronic pain that arose, not surprisingly, a year after the four of five years of intense trauma i experienced with friends dying and family members almost dying and a junky boyfriend and so much shit. i am safe now and now that i am safe, my body isn't like a mother lifting a truck off her baby anymore- the adrenaline is gone and i am just broken and busted up.

anyway i hate when people leave their life stories on my blog but that is the first thing i have really written about my pain and it came from this surge of energy i got by reading your piece and feeling inspired by the way you work language to be in many moments at once- the pain, the hope, the immediate material present reality and how there is so much strength in the vulnerability and repetitions and uncertainties and the concrete, so here and tangible details woven into the questions- it's a really cool thing. not sure how it's done yet, but i like it. :)

xoxo

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

Davka, thank you thank you for sharing your life story – I totally appreciate it, it's truly validating!!! I so often feel hopeless, so to imagine that my writing about feeling hopeless can make you feel hopeful, well that actually makes me hopeful, except that now I'm getting a bit hypoglycemic, better do feldenkrais and then eat something, right?

Oh, and this:

"denying someone's reality is about the most bitter thing you can do"

Oh my oh my oh my you are so right and how awfully often it happens!

And this:

"feeling inspired by the way you work language to be in many moments at once- the pain, the hope, the immediate material present reality and how there is so much strength in the vulnerability and repetitions and uncertainties and the concrete, so here and tangible details woven into the questions"

Thank you thank you!

Love love love –

mattilda