Thursday, February 28, 2013

Returning to the glamour of the present

            Just quickly, so the headache doesn't intrude. The headache is intruding. Just quickly, so that I can get some words on this page, maybe I can talk about the headache. Maybe it began when I went to that meeting to start a Seattle chapter of Queers against Israeli Apartheid, a meeting where it specified on the announcement that this was a scent-free space and whenever a public space says scent-free, in this case the new Queer Youth Space, a lovely place started by and for youth, but whenever something like that says scent-free I'm immediately suspicious. Because there is no public space that is scent-free. And in this case maybe there weren't any scents except for the horrible toxic poison of the new paint on the floors, maybe some paint in the hallway also but mostly I think the horrible smell I noticed in the hallway right when I got upstairs was the smell of the paint on the floor of Queer Youth Space draining into the hallway because their windows were closed. And in a going to that meeting was so much more awful than if it didn't say scent-free because I kept sitting there thinking it must not be that bad, right? And after their windows and front door were open there was a breeze through the place and it felt better. But then the huge heating mechanism went on and made all this noise and someone closed the window and then I could feel a headache starting but still I looked around at everyone else and thought oh, no one else seems to be bothered, it must be all right.
            The one thing about my health that's better in Seattle is that I don't always have a horrible pounding sinus headache, I mean I didn't. Before that meeting. And then afterwards it was back, and everything would trigger it, the new carpet in my feldenkrais practitioner's office, the new office that's so much easier to get to than the old one but now the new carpet. What else? Anything else, really, but this isn't the headache I'm talking about. The headache I'm talking about now is different, it's triggered by light, can you believe it, light? Like when the sun came out one day a little over a week ago and I thought oh, I should be out in it as much as possible, just to get the light through my eyes, right, to reset my system, and then.
            And then this headache, like bruises behind my eyes, like my eyeballs are stuck or maybe not quite stuck but slower in moving. Maybe I just notice them more because of the pain behind my eyes. And then a sharp pains all over my forehead from a glimpse of the sun and is this a migraine? I've never had a migraine, I don't think, so I read a little bit but it doesn't sound like a migraine because it's even, maybe an eyestrain headache, that's what the acupuncturist says. I talk to people with migraines: they say it's a migraine. I can't look at the computer screen for more than 5 minutes, so I haven't been able to write at all. And now the thing that makes me the most calm, going on a walk in the morning, now it's scary, because the sun might come out at any moment or even not the sun but just the glare, and what if I don't have my sunglasses or what if I do have sunglasses but it's not enough, and then at night when I turn on the computer all that vibrating white of the screen pounding into my head and I have to turn all the lights off in my apartment, maybe not that light, no, that one too, turn off all the lights in my apartment and sit at my table in what do I do? What do I do, because I can't read, that hurts my eyes, struggling to focus brings on the headache, and I can't write because of the computer screen, I can turn the radio on or listen to music or talk on the phone but I can't talk on the phone too late because then I'll get wired and yes, the darkness is calming outside, calming at night when I go on a walk except what about those lights, street lights, can someone turn those off?
The most comforting thing today is that I realize the voice activation software has been so slow and unreliable because that's what happens when there's lots of text in the document, like the document that’s the first draft of Sketchtasy, the one I focus on writing, the one I'm sad about not being able to access the last week or so, since this headache started, but anyway now I realize I can split that document in two and probably it will be faster, the software I mean, okay I better flee the computer before the headache overwhelms.


james said...

mattilda - do you have a working P.O. box in Seattle, or do you get postal mail care of City Lights publisher?

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

James, thanks for asking – send me an email when you get a chance, and I'll let you know my home address…

Love –